Growing Social Entrepreneurs

“Impacting the world through compassion”

OCCares is a non-profit organization with a dedicated team of community and business leaders who are passionate about growing the next generation of social innovators through a student social entrepreneurship program. 


Video highlights from previous events:

OCCares Walk Vision Video

OCCares Entertainer's Invitation to Join Video

Dr. Katherine Ahn & Mike Learakos on KCAL9


  Katherine Ahn, DDS   Founder & Board Member

Katherine Ahn, DDS

Founder & Board Member

Dr. Katherine Ahn has a special interest in helping people and being involved in the community. While operating The Image Center, a dental, plastic surgery, spa and wellness center in Huntington Beach with her plastic surgeon husband Dr. Peter Newen, Dr. Ahn serves on the OCKCC (Orange County Korean Cultural Center) Board, Orangewood Academy Administrative Board, GGSDA Church Advisory Council and Festival Ballet Theater Advisory Board.  Dr. Ahn was appointed to the Orange County Children and Families Commission in early 2012 and is enjoying getting to know the wonderful non-profit organizations in Orange County.

Dr. Ahn is a member of the ADA, CDA, OCDS, AACD and IAOMT.  She is passionate about learning and actively participates in advanced dental training courses throughout the year. Her key educational and training highlights are as follows:

  • Undergraduate education from La Sierra University
  • Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) degree from UCLA School of Dentistry
  • Pediatric Dental Residency training from UCLA School of Dentistry
  • Cosmetic, Reconstructive & Neuromuscular Dentistry training from LVI, center for advanced dental education
  • Non-extraction Orthodontics training from Full Face Global with Dr. Derek Mahony
  • TMD and Sleep Apnea Therapy training from Dr. Steve Olmos

Dr. Ahn also has a passion for helping people live healthier.  She recently started “Newenwellness @ The Image Center” where through various programs like OLAH (Optimal Lifestyle And Health), she and her team teach clients how to transform their lives through health education, plant-based diet cooking classes, fitness, yoga, body therapies and nutritional coaching.

Dr. Ahn has a 12 year old daughter Elise Newen who has a special love for books, singing and ballet dance.

  Kenneth S. August, Esq   Board Member         

Kenneth S. August, Esq

Board Member




Ken August is the founder and manager of August Law Group, P.C., a transactional law firm specializing in domestic and international corporate and financial transactions, securities and private equity investments, mergers and acquisitions, technology transfer, licensing and strategic alliances. He began his legal career in Washington, D.C., as part of the legal team representing former U.S. Treasury Secretary William Simon's investment banking firm, Wesray Corporation, in a variety of public and private financial transactions, management buy-outs and related corporate activity. Prior to establishing his own Firm, Mr. August worked at Graham & James, Los Angeles, CA, specializing in mergers & acquisitions, corporate finance, franchise and securities, and joint venture transactions for the firm's international clientele. During his career, Mr. August has participated as legal counsel in transactions having an aggregate value of more than $2.5 Billion dollars. He has served as an Adjunct Professor both at Whittier Law School, teaching in the area of corporations and securities law, and for the University of California at Irvine Graduate School of Management on general legal issues impacting business professionals. He has lectured extensively in the areas of international business and financial transactional law, including for the Harvard Business School Association of Orange County in 2006, and was a contributing author on international mergers and acquisitions in the book The Art of M&A, published by Dow Jones-Irwin in 1987. Mr. August was a Founding Member of the College of Fellows of the Centre for International Legal Studies, headquartered in Kitzbühl, Austria, and has served as a Director for the Singapore American Business Association (Southern California), the International Foundation for the Advancement and Support of Technology, as a Director and Past President of the Orange County International Business and Protocol Foundation, and as Chairman of the California International Business Advisory Board, Rancho Santiago Community College District. He is fluent in English, French and Spanish, and has a working knowledge of German, Italian, Portuguese and Russian. 

  Karen Thomas   Board Member

Karen Thomas

Board Member

Karen, Children Ministry Director with South Orange County Church, has served her community in civic, voluntary and professional capacities for approximately 20 years. She has vast experiences in the development and implementation of children’s curriculum for faith-based Programs. Karen taught 15 years at Artesian Well Faith Center Children Church Department and served as Director of the Nursery Program. She assisted the Artesian Well Christian Preparatory Academy staff (ACE Program). Four Square Pre-School and Laurie’s Day Care benefited from Karen’s skills and generosity as a volunteer. Prior to her current appointment position with South Orange County Church, Karen taught for 5 years at Heritage Family Fellowship. As Director of Children ministry, Karen is training a staff of volunteers to mentor and teach God’s love to children. Karen has taught youth groups and facilitated children’s retreats. Her future plan is to open camps for children to learn and study the Arts in a Christian environment. Karen’s interest in the Arts started during her high school years. She performed with the band and dance recitals winning several honors. In 1982 she competed in the Long Beach chapter N.A.A.C.P. Act-So. She won first place and traveled to Boston, Massachusetts to represents in the nationals.

Karen contributes her passion and success with children to her mother, Glorious Lawrence, who dedicated over 35 years working with children and families. Glorious has several academic degrees.( BS MSW DCL). She held positions with the State of Tennessee Department of Social Services, Memphis City Schools and from 1976 to 2004 with Orange County Social Services Agency. Glorious served the County of Orange in a variety of professional social work, supervisory and high-level management assignments. 

Professionally, Karen is employed as a Contract Specialist II for Health Care Partners. She worked for 6 years for a local law firm as Accounts Manager. She was employed for Sea Air Credit Union for 15 years as Collections Manager.

Karen is married to Charles, a Mortgage Banker and Realtor. Charles has Bachelors in Biblical Studies and a minor in Theology. They have 2 adult daughters, Alexandria and Andrea. Alexandria and Andrea model their parents’ leadership and outstanding character. Alexandria earned a scholarship and is presently a junior at CSUF. She is studying Pre-Med/Health Science and is captain of the CSUF women basketball team. Andrea attends Fullerton College studying both Theater Arts and Business. Andrea received the Heritage Award, the highest honor at Irvine High School, Herb Alfred Scholarship Award while attending California Summer School for the Arts. (CSSA) and the MACYS Award for her performance in the production “The Boyfriend”.

Anita L. Gibson, MBA, PA

Board Member

Anita Gibson has a passion for people; she is devoted to helping others reach their full potential. For this reason, she is active in her local church, as well as volunteering her time participating in Jail Ministry in North Orange County under the Gleaner’s Christian organization, where she is able to minister to men and women in the local jails. Ms. Gibson also enjoys going to women’s shelters and ministering the word and counseling the mothers and has since joined the Youth Mentoring Task Force (YTMF) in Orange County, where she has the privilege to speak into the lives of high school students within North Orange County School Districts. Ms. Gibson has recently accepted an invitation to serve as a judge at the 2013 Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda (FBLA-PBL) National Leadership Conference (NLC) in Anaheim, California, where young individuals have the opportunity to share their talents, gifts and abilities.  

With over 18 years of experience in customer service, leadership training and business development, Ms. Gibson’s background and trainings provide important principles, strategies, a high level of energy and team support enabling her to reach others in an effort to create synergy in a diverse cultural society.

Ms. Gibson is a Senior Associate, Client Solutions for Cultiver Group Inc. and an Independent Agent for Boomers Insurance Services. Her education background is as follows:

  • Master of Business Administration/Public Administration · University of Phoenix
  • Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration · University of Phoenix
  • Associate of Arts in Administration of Justice · Cerritos College
  • Associate of Arts in Paralegal Studies · Cerritos College
  • Accident, Health and Life Insurance, California State License 

Ms. Gibson resides in Orange County, California and she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, outdoors activities, traveling, reading and helping others. It is a great honor to be a part of OC CARES organization, through love and compassion; we are uniting the community one person at a time.

Thelma Gutierrez

Board Member

MaryAnn Pedersen

Board Member

John Wallace, DDS

Board Member

Frank Hathaway

Board Member

Matthew White (White and Company CPA: www.whiteandcocpa.com)

Board Member

OCCares is a 501c3 organization