Builder’s Luncheon 2023 raises $163,000+


On May 11, Orange County leaders in the construction industry gathered for Hope Builders’ annual Builder’s Luncheon to raise over $163,000 to help prepare the future construction workforce. Nearly 90 attendees joined hosts Clark Construction Group, DPR Construction and McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. to support Hope Builders’ mission and network with industry friends.

As guests arrived, trainees led them on tours of the construction facility to demonstrate the skills they learned in their 12-week training course.

As the program began, guests enjoyed a delicious BBQ lunch and heard remarks from Carlos Gonzalez, Division President, Clark Construction, Michael Konetzke, Business Unit Leadership Team, DPR Construction and Mike Myers, Regional President, McCarthy Building Companies. In their remarks, each host shared their personal motivations for their involvement- all echoing the belief that Hope Builders is effectively addressing the persistent challenges for youth and employers in Orange County.  

The event concluded with an inspiring speech by Jaylen, a current construction program trainee. Jaylen talked candidly about his childhood—how he frequently moved around and fell into a crowd that wasn’t a good influence. This led to him dropping out of high school in 11th grade. Eventually he landed in jail at the age of 19.

“When I was in jail, I learned that I was going to be a father. That’s when I realized I needed to do something different with my life.”

He began working but continued to struggle to provide for his family. While working a warehouse job, he heard about Hope Builders from a co-worker. He jumped at the opportunity to enter the building trades. “Hope Builders is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” Jaylen said. “Since joining the program I’ve learned so many things like framing, how to properly use power tools, plumbing and electrical work. I’ve learned that I have a knack for these things, especially carpentry, and stepping up as a leader. I’ve also benefitted greatly from the soft skills training I’ve received. Before Hope Builders I would always act on impulse. Now, I have the tools to ensure I don’t get so easily upset.”

Jaylen concluded his talk by sharing that he plans to work toward his high school diploma and continue his education beyond that. He announced again how grateful he is to Hope Builders.

“I want to thank you all for this opportunity,” he said. “I also hope you all continue to support Hope Builders because they are truly delivering on their promise to help young people succeed.”

Thank you again to all those who contributed to making this year’s event such a huge success! You are helping to pave a pathway to prosperity, and we can’t do our work without your generous support.