CSULB scholarship fund launched in memory of Long Beach mayor’s late mother

A scholarship fund has been set up at Cal State Long Beach in honor of Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia’s mother who has died from complications due to COVID-19.

Garcia and his younger brotherJacob O’Donnell set up the scholarship to help CSULB healthcare students, with a focus on women and immigrants.

A Peruvian immigrant, Gaby O’Donnell, 61, was a healthcare worker for almost 30 years. Her greatest accomplishment was seeing her two sons graduate from CSULB, Garcia said.

“She cared for thousands of patients and assisted nurses and doctors,” Garcia stated in a Facebook post announcing the scholarship fund. “While she never went to college, she loved the university and this scholarship would continue her work of supporting future nurses, medical professionals, and patients.”

O’Donnell worked as a maid, clerk and other jobs before she was hired as an assistant in a clinic.

To donate to the fund, which has a $50,000 goal, click here.


Support our journalism.

Hyperlocal news is an essential force in our democracy, but it costs money to keep an organization like this one alive, and we can’t rely on advertiser support alone. That’s why we’re asking readers like you to support our independent, fact-based journalism. We know you like it—that’s why you’re here. Help us keep hyperlocal news alive in Long Beach.

Stephanie Rivera is the community engagement editor for the Long Beach Post. After graduating from CSULB with a degree in journalism, Stephanie worked for Patch Latino and City News Service before coming to the Long Beach Post in 2015.