Costco Donates Nearly $400K to Inner-City Education Organizations That Benefited Naturade Co-Owners as Students

Costco Donates Nearly $400K to Inner-City Education Organizations That Benefited Naturade Co-Owners as Students

he donations went to The LEAD Program and Prep for Prep, two programs Naturade Co-Owners Kareem Cook and Claude Tellis participated in as youth.

 Irvine, CA, December 19, 2022 – Naturade is pleased to announce Costco has donated $197,000 to both The LEAD Program and Prep for Prep. These two education-focused organizations played important roles in the childhoods of Naturade co-owners Kareem Cook and Claude Tellis, and ultimately led them to pursue careers in business.

Naturade first entered Costco Wholesale warehouses in 2021. This month, LEAD and Prep for Prep received nearly $400,000 to support inner-city education. Both organizations have rich ties to their communities and to Naturade’s co-owners.

“We can’t begin to express the joy this brings us,” Cook said. “We are so thankful to Costco for being such an amazing company with leaders at the top dedicated to truly making an impact. They have a history of supporting organizations in the education space, and we are so thankful that through our partnership, we’re able to give back to the two organizations we credit for our success. Prep for Prep had the most significant impact on my life, ultimately providing the opportunity to attend a prominent high school, which then led to attending Duke University for my undergraduate degree and my MBA. I have Prep for Prep to thank for helping me reach where I am today.”

“The LEAD Program introduced me to the business industry when I was in high school and I was immediately hooked,” Tellis said. “The program taught me business skills and truly sparked a passion within me. I’m thrilled we’re able to support these organizations through our partnership with Costco. They have been incredible partners and we look forward to continuing to work with them.”

Since 1978, Prep for Prep has been committed to developing “future leaders by creating access for young people of color to first-rate educational, leadership development and professional advancement opportunities.” Prep for Prep prides itself on its students’ dedication to excellence, integrity, commitment and courage.

“I am so grateful for this exciting and generous gift from Costco, facilitated by Prep for Prep alum Kareem Cook and Naturade,” Prep for Prep CEO Ruth Jurgensen said. “Costco’s major gift allows Prep to continue to support our future, which Prep is squarely focused on as detailed in our new Strategic Plan. We are committed to bringing opportunities to develop an entrepreneurial mindset in our students, which will only improve their lives, and the contribution from Kareem and Naturade to Prep aligns with this work. Thank you so much, Costco, Naturade, Kareem Cook and Claude Tellis for believing in the future of Prep for Prep!”

LEADership, Education and Development (LEAD) provides under-represented high school students with residential college experience, leadership development and immersive learning experiences in industries such as business, finance, entrepreneurship, medicine, engineering and more. Since 1980, LEAD has rapidly expanded its programming and remains committed to developing generations of life-long learners with the capacity to contribute to human-kind, equipped to ‘think differently’ about how they learn, where they learn and the relevancy and application of what they learn.

“We are thrilled to partner with Naturade co-owner and LEAD Alum Claude Tellis and Costco as we join together to create learning opportunities for the next generation by guiding vibrant and talented students, preparing them to compete in this 21st century ‘knowledge economy,’” President and CEO of The LEAD Program, Dr. Lawrence Drake, said.