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Roderick D. Jones


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Making Music Dreams Come True...

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RDJF 2014 Student Awards Gala at UCLA

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Making dreams come true...

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A legacy of community service...

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Music education and mentoring at it's best!

The Roderick D. Jones Foundation in Action:










Help us to support and nurture our up and coming young musical artists with your tax deductible donation.

Back Row: Gardena City Councilmember Rachel Johnson, Los Angeles Unified School District “After The Bell” Director Anthony White, California State Superintendent of Public Education Tom Torlakson, Mekala Session (drums), William Cabison (keyboard), California State Assemblymember Steven Bradford

Front Row: RDJ Foundation Executive Director Sandra Jones, Michael Plasencia (guitar), Alice Shin (vocals), Christopher Astoquillca (saxophone) Nedra Wheeler (RDJ Foundation Music Director)

The RDJF CLass of 2013

2012 marked the ten year anniversary of the City of Gardena’s Annual Jazz Festival. The festival has become a destination event for the many thousands of jazz aficionados who flock to Rowley Park year after year to enjoy a day filled with music, food, family and friends.

With its uniquely American origins, jazz has spread across the globe, evolving and expanding and continuing to bring music lovers of all backgrounds together.

Roderick D. Jones, “RJ”, was instrumental in bringing the vision of a world class jazz festival to the City of Gardena, a city that he loved and in which he lived and served his entire life. In that spirit, the 2012 Jazz Festival Committee proudly sponsored the first Roderick D. Jones Memorial Scholarship.

What others say about us….

“I’m inspired by this scholarship program in the name of Rod Jones, a co-founder of this event [The Gardena Jazz Festival] and I’m going to pitch in $100 and I encourage others to pitch in some money to help grow this scholarship fund.”

Tom TorlaksonCalifornia State Superintendent for Public Education

“This [scholarship program] was founded in the name of a good friend of mine, Roderick D. Jones.  We started this festival around young people who played music.  It’s important to support that and provide a foundation for them.”

Steven BradfordCalifornia State Assemblymember, 62nd District; Chair and Co-Founder of the Gardena Jazz Festival

“Music and the arts are often the first things to get cut out of the curriculum.  We need to stop that.  That’s even more reason why we need to continue to support these people [The Roderick D. Jones Foundation] in the future.”

Anthony WhiteDirector Los Angeles Unified School District "After the Bell" Program

“As an educator myself, I know how important it is for the community to support these young people.  This scholarship program is a wonderful way to do that.”

Rachel JohnsonGardena City Councilmember and Teacher

The Roderick D. Jones Foundation

The Roderick D. Jones Foundation’s  “soul” purpose is to preserve and continue the vision of Roderick Darryl Jones, a life long Gardena, CA native and community leader by every year finding musically talented youth who have distinguished themselves from amongst their peers both artistically and academically. Our goal is simple.  The RDJ Foundation, through monetary awards and opportunities to meet and perform with working professional musicians, wishes to provide a platform to support and nurture our up and coming young musical artists.

The scholarship awards are given to young musicians and vocalists who are honing their craft, excelling in school, and gaining experience as performers in the world of music, specifically jazz. RJ worked tirelessly as a coach and mentor the youth in his community and it is in his name and memory that these awards will continue to be presented each year to those qualifying young musicians.