Spotlight on Committee of 300

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committee-of-300 recently spoke with Dianne McNinch, Speakers Bureau Chair of Committee of 300, via email. They talked about the inspirations and challenges of running a nonprofit organization in Long Beach.

How long has Committee of 300 been around? Did it start in Long Beach?

The Committee of 300 of Long Beach has been around 41 years, it was started the first year of the Long Beach Grand Prix, the longest running “Street Race” in North America. Yes, it certainly was started in Long Beach, in Lombardos’ Restaurant & Bar, which is now the site of 555.

Describe Committee of 300. Tell us a little about your nonprofit, your mission, the people you serve or your goals.

The C300 was formed to assist in the promotion of community activities related to the City of Long Beach including the activities related to the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach.

We are the Ambassadors of LB and the Grand Prix during and leading up to Race Week, during the year we are the ‘go-to’ labor pool for other non-profits and LB events.

How is Committee of 300 different from similar nonprofits?

We are available ten months of the year to support other non-profits and events as a labor pool and support help.

Additionally, each year we choose a non-profit and raise funds especially to support their efforts.

How is Committee of 300 involved with the community?

We provide event support for the LB Marathon, traffic control for the Boat Parade, help with beach cleanups, manpower for the Long Beach Grand Cru which raises funds for Legal Aid. Prior to the LBGPrix, conduct Press Day for all invited media, during Race Week we are the Ambassadors of the City by providing direct interface with the over 100,000 folks who sit in the Grandstands, and spend money in our city benefiting business small and large.

What are some of the biggest successes Committee of 300 has had?

The Committees greatest strength lies in the diverse backgrounds of its members, allowing a wide range of talents and abilities to work together to benefit all aspects of Long Beach. I would imagine that our biggest success is surviving over 40 years, while benefiting our city’s events and other non-profits.

What is the most rewarding part of running Committee of 300?

The most rewarding part of being part of the Committee of 300 is interaction with other volunteers. Our group is one of the most diverse in the City. Members are from all income groups, all ethnic groups, all measures of education background. We truly enjoy the company of each other, and the wide range of activities all year long.

What are the challenges you face — as a nonprofit, as an advocacy group, or in your industry?

We face the challenge of an aging population. Membership numbers declined, as our folks died off, moved away etc. We are working on becoming more visible to the greater Long Beach Community in order to gain new members who are interested in what we do, during Race Week, as well as year round.

What are the future plans for Committee of 300?

We plan to increase membership, increase visibility, and find organizations that can benefit from our labor force year round.

Do you have any special events or fundraisers you’d like to tell us about?

Oh yes,
Jan21st – Petroleum Club 2636 Linden 6PM, Information Meeting.
Feb. 25th Forbidden City Marina Pacifica Mall, 7PM Kick-Off Party for 2015 Race, March 25th – 3000 Pacific, LB Grand Prix Ofc 7PM, Orientation for New Volunteers

How can people get involved with Committee of 300? What do you need — volunteers, donations, etc?

People are invited to come to any of the events listed here, or that they see in local media. We need members that are friendly, able to stand for a minimum of 1 hour during Grandstand supervision during Race week, able to interact with other volunteers and visitors to our city an a pleasant and professional manner.

What is the most inspiring advice that you received and who did it come from?

“Do not forget small kindnesses and do forgive small mistakes” this was on a greeting card sent to me many years ago. I like it!!

One Last Thing:

The Committee of 300 welcomes members from all walks of life, all ages(over21)
and sizes. Please take a look and see if we are a play group that would be a fit for you.

Committee of 300 Details:
Address: 3000 Pacific – Long Beach
Phone Number: 562-981-9200
Website: in the process of being redone

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