LAEF crowns King and Queen of Hearts with $214,000 raised

The Los Alamitos Education Foundation (LAEF) crowned the King & Queen of Hearts on February 8 at The Grand in Long Beach. The King and Queen are George and Linda Sagen. George and Linda have lived in Los Alamitos since 1976 and are parents to three Griffin Graduates. They also have four grandchildren who have attended Los Al schools. George retired from GRS Construction, a residential construction company. Linda was the first female president of the LAHS Football booster club and co-established the For the Kids Foundation, which provided additional funds to LAHS sports programs.

Photo courtesy of LAEF.

All four Royal Court couples candidates ended their 9-week fundraising campaign at the Royal Ball and Coronation; the grand fundraising total was over $214,000! This exceeded the previous record, set during the 2017-18 campaign, of $210,000. Every dollar that each couple raised counted as a vote, and the Sagens were the top fundraisers.

Carrie Logue, LAEF Executive Director said, “We are ecstatic and humbled by the tremendous amount of time and effort all the couples put into the King & Queen of Hearts campaign. We are thrilled by the engagement of our community and how the candidates introduced many new people to LAEF’s mission!”

Duke sponsors SXS Industries, Southland Credit Union, Wells Fargo and Jen Rohdenburg Group were on hand to cheer on all the candidates. The crowd enjoyed music from a jazz combo of Los Alamitos High School students. Mark Thomas, of On the Mark auctions, served as the Master of Ceremonies.

The 2018-19 Royal Court couples are Jim & Vhenus Belisle (Hopkinson parents, Vhenus: School Psychologist, Jim: Teacher for St. Hedwig and LAEF), Tony & Rachael DeMarco (LAHS parents, Tony: RCSD Board of Directors, Rachael: PTA Executive Board) and Paul & Jen Rohdenburg (McGaugh parents, Paul: ER Doctor, Jen: Real Estate Broker).

LAEF President Kevin Guetig said, “I am truly amazed by the ongoing success of King and Queen of Hearts campaign. Our fundraising has totaled to over $735,000 over the past six years and Royal Ball attendance has grown to 270 community members. This will continue to benefit all students as proceeds support our STEAM Initiative (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, Math), which provides instruction and fairs on all campuses, and the district-wide STEAM showcase on April 6 at LAHS. It also supports Media Center teachers at all elementary schools and seed funds to enhance STEAM learning all year long.”

LAEF is the non-profit partner of Los Alamitos Unified School District. LAEF enhances educational excellence in our community by providing after-school and summer enrichment programs to Pre-K to 12th grade students. For additional information on LAEF, please call (562) 799-4700 x80424 or visit The King and Queen of Hearts campaign link is

This article was released by the Los Alamitos Education Foundation.