Al and Cathy Annexstad, who established the Annexstad Family Foundation in 2000, were honored for their support of higher education in the Coachella Valley and across the nation through the Leaders for Tomorrow scholars, including students at the Cal State San Bernardino Palm Desert Campus.

The Annexstads were honored on April 11 when the Palm Desert Campus hosted its third annual “Keeping Our Brightest Stars” Scholarship Dinner at the new Kimpton Rowan hotel in downtown Palm Springs. During the event, an additional $25,000 gift from The Annexstad Family Foundation was announced for the University Legacy Scholarship fund.

The annual event raises the funds needed to support University Legacy Scholarships at the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus. This highly selective scholarship was created for deserving local students who are graduates of high schools in the Coachella Valley and have excelled both academically and in their community leadership.

Adrian Martinez, a graduate of Rancho Mirage High School and a pre-nursing major at Cal State San Bernardino’s Palm Desert Campus, was named the first PDC recipient of the Annexstad Family Foundation’s Leaders for Tomorrow Scholarship. He is also one of the first class of University Legacy Scholars at PDC that also includes Nicholas Conoway, Maria Morales, Kayla Robles and Stephanee Sandoval.

“We are so grateful to have the support of the Annexstads and so many others in our community who are making a commitment to lessening the ‘brain drain’ here in our Coachella Valley by supporting our University Legacy Scholarship program,” said Sharon Brown-Welty, dean of the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus. “When outstanding students choose to stay and earn their degrees at their local public university, they are taking the first step in a lifetime of service to our region. Our economic and social health depends on outstanding leaders being nurtured and continuing to give back locally.”

The Annexstad Family Foundation was established in 2000 by Al and Cathy Annexstad and their family with a singular purpose of helping deserving young people realize their dreams of earning a college degree. The foundation strongly believes that among the ranks of America’s young people is a special group who have overcome extraordinary hardship in their young lives and who are likewise exceptionally bright and motivated. Their Leaders for Tomorrow Scholarship program assures that outstanding students are able to attend college without the debt burden after completing their degree. 

The “Keeping our Brightest Stars” dinner event has been previously hosted at the homes of Geoff Kors and James Williamson, and Oginana Masser. This year’s event was sponsored by the team at The Kimpton Rowan Palm Springs.

Located in beautiful Palm Desert, the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees, a doctorate in educational leadership, and teacher credentials and certificates. With more than 1,400 students, it is the Coachella Valley’s four-year public university and plays a vital role in educating and training the region’s growing population.

For more information about the CSUSB Palm Desert Campus, contact Mike Singer in the campus’ Office of Public Affairs at or (760) 341-2883, ext. 78107, or visit the campus website at