Update from PACE | January 30, 2023
To the best of our knowledge and contrary to what was reported or inferred by media coverage, the PACE organization is not the target of any investigation. We believe PACE has been placed in a very unfortunate situation because of an unrelated association with an ongoing investigation into alleged activities that occurred outside of the PACE organization. PACE has fully cooperated with authorities since the beginning of their investigation, and will continue to do so going forward.
We want our community to be aware that PACE has kept its word and continues to serve kids and their families who have come to rely on PACE programming. A recent research study shows that the PACE programming is “promising” in its effectiveness in preventing kids from becoming involved in street gangs, crime, drug use, and victimization.
We are committed to working through the recent, and temporary, disruptions:
Our previous executive director, who had been placed on indefinite leave by the board of directors in December, voluntarily resigned his position as of Thursday, January 19, 2023.
We have complete confidence and trust in our founder, Tony Espejo, who has stepped in as interim director. The board is working closely with Tony.
We have the full support of our private donors and our community supporters. We thank them for continuing their critical support of the PACE mission. We are hopeful that in the very near future our public support from the city will be reinstated.
PACE will continue to roll out spring and summer programming as planned.
The large group of volunteers that make PACE programming possible are continuing to support the organization. Dozens of Omaha police officers are still planning to participate as volunteers in our programs, and many family members of the kids we serve volunteer their time.
PACE will continue its commitment to maintain 8 Omaha city baseball fields and parks including Al Veys Complex, Bob Campos Soccer Complex, Christie Heights Park, Kountze Park, Lynch Park, Miller Park (Kerrie Orozco Memorial Ball Field), Morton Park and Walnut Hill Park.
Last year PACE served 5,143 kids. The PACE programs will continue to be available to help serve youth in our community, and we look forward to serving the same or more in 2023. We are grateful for anyone who stands with us to help make the PACE mission possible.
PACE, Chair of the Board of Directors
The P.A.C.E. program was started in 2005 by the Omaha Latino Peace Officers Association in conjunction with the Police Athletic League and area volunteers. The program is dedicated to preventing “at-risk” and disadvantaged inner-city children from becoming involved in street gangs, crime, drug use and victimization. It provides an opportunity to develop discipline, self-esteem and positive moral values through wholesome competition and "free" participation in soccer, baseball, CrossFit and flag football. P.A.C.E. has always stressed the importance of education to our youth, and we now offer "free" A.C.T. preparation classes to our high school participants.