Cestra “Ces” Butner, first vice president of the Port of Oakland and former president, CEO and owner of Horizon Beverage Company, made a multi-year pledge of $500,000 through the Cestra Butner Family Foundation to help 20 Oakland students pay for college this year.
He donated the money this week at an event held by the East Bay College Fund and Oakland Promise which jointly awarded scholarships to 400 Oakland high school graduating seniors, totaling over $3 million.
Graduates received up to $16,000 to attend four-year and two-year colleges, marking this year as the record number of scholarships awarded by the East Bay College Fund since it was established in 2002.
Casadora “Cassie” Boone, a graduating senior at Oakland Technical High School, received the Maryann Wolfe Award, a 4-year, $16,000 scholarship, to attend UC Irvine. She is the only African American violinist in the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra.