2019 JLSD Solutions Summit

The Junior League of San Diego’s (JLSD) annual Solutions Summit event took place on Thursday, September 12th at the Marina Village Conference Center in Mission Bay.

Solutions Summit is a collaborative conference that addresses some of the most pressing challenges facing the Transition-Age Foster Youth (TAY) population in San Diego. From its inception in 2015, our Solutions Summit conference has brought together over 40 local organizations for discussion and active problem-solving.

JLSD’s Solutions Summit helps our community partners determine a collective roadmap to move forward in key areas affecting the success of TAY. With the continued participation of Solution Summit attendees, these community roadmaps will be further developed, assessed, and implemented in phases over an appropriate timeline.  Members of the Junior League of San Diego work with each team through our TAY Task Forces Committee, to focus solely on advancing these roadmaps and building from the active problem-solving developed at Solutions Summit.

JLSD has spent several years looking at various challenges that youth face while in care and decided, in collaboration with members of our Steering Committee, to look specifically at the unique obstacles that are present once a youth separates from care. This year attendees selected from three topic areas: Education, Employment/Job Readiness and Adulting 101.  Each team was comprised of dedicated professionals and Junior League volunteers.

Some of the community partners represented at our 2019 event were Promises2Kids, Just in Time for Foster Youth, Voices for Children, Casey Family Programs, Walden Family Services, Children’s Advocacy Institute, County of San Diego Health & Human Services Agency, San Diego Mesa College, San Diego Youth Services, and the Center for Community Solutions. Just in Time provided a trauma informed care workshop to start the morning and a youth speaker also offered his unique perspective on the issues facing TAY within our three topic areas.  During the final afternoon session each team was given ten minutes to present their “solution” to the entire group, leaving everyone feeling refreshed and inspired to work together to make change for foster youth in our community as our day of creative collaboration came to a close.

JLSD President Emily Lake said “Solutions Summit is the premiere ‘think tank’ for organizations and individuals dedicated to assisting underserved youth, particularly those exiting the foster care system. This year participants came up with highly creative solutions with tons of potential. We are excited to move forward with several of the plans born at the Summit and look forward to the solutions for San Diego’s youth in need that they will generate!”

We look forward to sharing progress updates with you as our resulting Task Forces take up the challenge of putting ideas into action in the months ahead.

The Junior League of San Diego would like to recognize Kind Snacks and Halo Branded Solutions for their generous donations to the event, and our partners Epic Catering and Marina Village Conference Center.

#dearjlsd: Natalie Sollock

#dearjlsd (1)To commemorate our 90th year in San Diego, JLSD provisional, active, and sustaining members, as well as former members and community partners, are writing love letters to the Junior League of San Diego.


I joined the Junior League for two main reasons; I wanted to make new like-minded friends and for professional growth. Already, Junior League of San Diego, has opened the doors for both of these reasons and so much more. I have learned an incredible amount about human trafficking and San Diego’s efforts to end this. My heart floods with the need to help this cause at every meeting or training I attend. It is a beautiful passion that JLSD shares and has fired up inside me.

I am meeting some amazing women from a wide scope of interests and not only has JLSD introduced me to these ladies but also taught me more about myself as an adult acquiring new friends. I’ve never been good at finding a date, much less organically finding a new friend. Going JLSD has given me the opportunity to share an experience with other intelligent and inspiring women who I want to be around. There is a certain bond that comes with this experience that gives the basis for something to grow. I am grateful for the opportunity to grow a friendship with these beautiful women.

Second, I work for a small family business that looks big on the outside but is actually very small on the inside. I have 3 male coworkers at my office and work directly with a male manager of our San Diego location. While I know they respect my position as a leader, I do have to “lean in” so to speak or my voice gets lost. For full disclosure, we have 4 strong female managers at other locations and my boss is a strong female leader, I just work more closely with the men in my office. Junior League has given me the opportunity to meet other professional women, share challenges and successes in the workplace, hear some inspiring women in power speeches, and even join professional development training events. I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity to grow professionally because of JLSD programs and connections.

I have already gained so much in my provisional year and I am excited to see where this journey takes me!

Natalie Sollock
Provisional Member, 2018-2019




#dearjlsd: Rachelle Le Blanc

#dearjlsd (1)To commemorate our 90th year in San Diego, JLSD provisional, active, and sustaining members, as well as former members and community partners, are writing love letters to the Junior League of San Diego.


You create a space for opportunities, growth and development while serving and giving back to the community we love – San Diego!

I am thrilled to serve as the 2018-2019 Junior League of San Diego’s La Jolla Food and Wine Festival Chair! In this placement I have felt engaged, fulfilled and captivated.

Our leadership team – Marcy Lanoue, Gretchen Hopper & Bri Maheu have taught me how to be resilient, keep organized & lead an energetic team. I’m truly grateful for their friendship, humor & devotion to JLSD! We have built life long friendships, engaged the community & have had a lot of fun doing it!

I’m impatiently & eagerly looking forward to the La Jolla Food and Wine Festival on May 11, 2019 & can’t wait to see everyone there!


Warm Regards,
Rachelle Le Blanc
Food & Wine Festival Chair, 2018-2019




#dearjlsd: Kym Singer

#dearjlsd (1)To commemorate our 90th year in San Diego, JLSD provisional, active, and sustaining members, as well as former members and community partners, are writing love letters to the Junior League of San Diego.


I first joined this fabulous league back in 2014. I joined because I was searching for ways to get involved in the San Diego community. At the time I was working remote and missed the connection of people every day. Having been one to grow up in a household that was always supporting foster youth, I was also yearning for ways to give back. When I learned this league was available to me, a place to meet like- minded women and support youth in San Diego I knew immediately this was a win/win. What I didn’t know was how much this league would change me, as a woman, as a leader, and as a human for the better.

One of the first events I ever attended was Day of the Races. I connected with a couple of ladies in my provisional group and we decided to go together. I had no idea at the time that one of those ladies would become a lifelong friend. She has since transferred back to her hometown but we are still in contact to this day. She introduced me to her friends, her fitness regime, her favorite spots in San Diego, and things which have continually inspired me.

After my provisional year I joined the community council. I was immediately amazed at how incredible so many organizations in San Diego are in working with youth. After joining TAY Task Forces I applied to be a chair. My favorite memory was our 5K walk and Rally for Homeless youth which the league partnered on with quite a few community partner organizations. We worked hands to create this event which is still in existence today! The walk started at the JLSD house and ended at TAY Academy where we had political speakers, youth inspiration and news crews attending. Hearing the youth speak to the public and knowing our league was helping warmed my heart in ways I can’t even explain.

There are so many reasons I love JLSD. But seeing women I am fortunate to call friends give back, and hearing first hand that it is helping is overall one of the greatest feelings there is.

Kym Singer
Membership Services Council: Membership Programming & Special Events- Co-Chair, 2018-2019