Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey welcomes Bishop Daniel E. Garcia as Board Chair and names Martina O’Sullivan as new Board President

Seaside, California – Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey is excited to welcome Bishop Daniel E. Garcia to our Diocese and to Catholic Charities as our Board Chairman. Catholic Charities also named Martina O’Sullivan as Board President. The agency is thrilled to receive Bishop Daniel’s and Martina’s guidance to continue providing a path out of poverty for low income families and individuals in Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito and San Luis Obispo Counties.


Bishop Daniel E. Garcia was installed on Jan 29, 2019 as the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Monterey. He was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Austin, Texas in 1988 and was appointed as the first Auxiliary Bishop to the Diocese of Austin in 2015. Bishop Daniel has served on many boards and councils, including the College of Consultors, Dean of the North Austin Deanery, and Communication Committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.  Catholic Charities serves as the Bishop’s social justice arm for the Diocese of Monterey.   


Martina O’Sullivan is a long-standing dedicated member of the Catholic Charities family. She was Executive Director for Catholic Charities from 1997-2005 and is currently a devoted Board member. She currently also serves as Secretary of the Board of Trustees for Catholic Charities USA. In addition, Martina has been serving for the past two years as the co-chair of the Holiday Food Drive for Second Harvest Food Bank’s and brings a long history of service in health care through different roles at Dignity Health. She has been a strong community leader involved in issues related to social justice, health care, immigration, food security, and domestic violence prevention among many others. At the core of all the work, Martina shows a strong commitment to social justice and to make a positive difference in our community.


On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff, Executive Director Ana Ventura Phares welcomes Bishop Daniel and Martina in their new roles to guide and lead the agency’s mission to serve those in need with dignity and compassion.   Catholic Charities provides the following services: Legal Immigration and Citizenship, Winter Emergency Rent and Utility Assistance, Tattoo Removal, Nutrition Education, and food and health security through CalFresh and MediCal enrollment assistance and outreach.

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Martina and Bishop Press Release

Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey names new Executive Director, Ana Ventura Phares

Seaside, California – Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey has named Ana Ventura Phares, J.D. as  Executive Director of the agency. Ana’s background in human resources, non-profits, law, and civic participation will help to lead the agency in its strategic direction. As Executive Director, Ana will strengthen the programs that help individuals and families become stable. She will also expand community support to increase self-sufficiency. In this role, Ana will oversee 23 staff in the 4 counties of Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito and San Luis Obispo.

Ana grew up on the Central Coast and her family worked in the agricultural industry in Salinas. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Santa Clara University and her Juris Doctorate from Thomas Jefferson School of Law. She worked in Santa Cruz County Government for 20 years, and served on the Watsonville City Council and the Board of Directors for Dignity Health Dominican Hospital Santa Cruz.

“I am excited to work with the dedicated staff, volunteers, Board of Directors, and the Bishop to continue our mission to provide help and create hope. I look forward to developing new partnerships in the community and strengthening our relationships to maximize resources to prevent and reduce poverty on the Central Coast. With your help, I am honored to advance the Catholic Charities mission of compassion and social justice. We ask ourselves, who is our neighbor in need and how can we help them?”

On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff, Chairperson Chris Panetta welcomes Ana to the agency.

Catholic Charities provides the following programs: Emergency Rental and Utility Assistance, Tattoo Removal, Immigration and Citizenship, Nutrition Education, and Cal Fresh and Medi-Cal outreach.

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Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey Awarded $100,000 to Support Families on Central Coast

Seaside, California – Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey announces receipt of a $100,000 grant from Monterey Peninsula Foundation for operating support to increase the self-sufficiency and financial stability of low-income residents in Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties.

Low income families face complex issues that may trigger a financial crisis at any time due to unemployment, health related issues, unexpected debt, reduced income, and/or seasonal work. According to the Center for Community Economic Development, 42.3% of Monterey County and 36.2% of Santa Cruz County falls below the self-sufficiency line.

The funds granted by MPF will be used over two years to provide comprehensive client support, case management, and immediate basic needs for families in crisis. Ana Ventura Phares, Interim Executive Director, says in regards to the award, “This generous grant will provide much needed services for
our neighbors in need here on the central coast.”

Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey provides rental and utility assistance between the months of November and January, as well as long-term financial education, budgeting and savings strategies for families, immigration and citizenship support and tattoo removal.


Terrie Iacino to Retire as Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey's Executive Director

Seaside, California – Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey announces that Terrie Iacino, Executive Director, will
retire effective August 15, 2018.

Terrie Iacino transitioned from Interim Director to Executive Director in February 2012. For seven years she has
helped bring local, regional, statewide and national attention to the work that Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey
accomplishes in the four counties on the central coast of California.

The hallmarks of Terrie’s tenure are strong core agency services, expanded the geographic reach, advanced
organizational effectiveness and an increase in the base of financial support for Catholic Charities. Terrie says, “I have
been privileged to serve with an extraordinary team of board members, professionals, donors and volunteers at
Catholic Charities focused on client services. It has been work that impassioned me, nurtured me and made me

Terrie established the Saint Toribio Romo Legacy Fund to offset the costs for any client and their qualifying family
members who seek specialized immigration and citizenship services. To many, Saint Toribio Romo is known as a
patron of migrants.

Attorney and former Catholic Charities board member, Ana Ventura-Phares, will begin as Interim Executive
Director on August 1, 2018 to as the Board of Directors implements a robust search for the new Executive Director.

We are deeply grateful to Terrie for her dedication to the mission of Catholic Charities to reduce poverty on the
Central Coast. We wish her well on her next journey.

Diocese of Monterey Bishop Richard Garcia dies, 71

Bishop Richard Garcia's life and legacy will be remembered fondly at Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey. May he rest in eternal peace.

From (Click link below for redirect)

This is a wonderful summary of the highlights of his life and the schedule of the funeral services.

Hope Hope In Home Volunteer Opportunity

Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey has opened the Hope in Home Rental Assistance program for the 2017 season. This program services individuals and families in the community by offering rental and utility assistance (on a limited basis). We receive more calls for assistance than we have resources to support. We are in dire need to find 4 to 6 compassionate and loving individuals to work in our office for a minimum 2 hours a week to make return phone calls to clients through November, December and January 2018. We have training, a full script and phones for them to use, we are simply in need of manpower. Bi-lingual is a plus, but not necessary to help with the return calls.

Are you interested in volunteering?