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Reverend Gerardo "Jerry" Menchaca has been a youth advocate for over twenty years. Born in Santa Barbara, California, he was one of nine children raised by his single, devoted mother. He has been married to his beautiful wife, Ruby, since 1985 and has four wonderful children.

In 1991, Rev. Menchaca relocated to Modesto, CA, and became a volunteer chaplain at the California Youth Authority in Stockton, CA. In 1999, he became a licensed minister with the United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI). Under Rev. Menchaca’s leadership, the Prison Volunteer Program was adopted into the curriculum of multiple facilities including the Men’s & Women’s Safety Center, Juvenile Hall, Men's and Women’s Honor Farm, as well as the Sierra Conservation Center (Jamestown), with over fifty volunteers under his direction. That same year (2000), he co-founded the Boys to Men Youth Mentorship Program in Modesto. The following year, he founded THUG Intervention, a gang intervention and group behavior program. In 2004, Rev. Menchaca was appointed Director of Life In Focus Education (LIFE), a life skills program at the Modesto Youth Center (MYC), and in 2005, he was placed on the Board of Directors of MYC. Soon after, he joined the Hispanic Leadership Council of Stanislaus County and served as Seargent of Arms and Vice President of the Board of Directors. Additionally, in 2006, Rev. Menchaca served on the Stanislaus County Community Gang Task Force.

Pastor Jerry Menchaca and his wife Ruby
Pastor Jerry Menchaca speaking at the pulpit, his wife Ruby on his right side

In 2008, Rev. Menchaca relocated to Los Angeles, CA to become the Program Director of Calvary Recovery Center of Covina, CA. The next year, he served as the Director of Life in Focus Education and District Chaplain at Christian Prison Fellowship (CPF) of Southern California, becoming the first Hispanic in the UPCI to hold that office. In that same year, he was appointed to serve as the National CPF Liaison to the UPCI. He also was a member of the Meth Task Force of Orange County, and a member of the Drug Store Program sponsored by the California Department of Justice.


Rev. Menchaca has received many awards, collaborated with the County Sheriff and City Police Departments, and served on many community and county school committees and in the capacity of a gang expert and consultant to schools and adoption agencies. He has also appeared on Fox Radio, providing insight on gang subculture. He has a proven record of solid leadership skills and continues to establish many youth programs throughout the Western United States.


Currently, Rev. Menchaca is a member of the Greater Santa Barbara Clergy Association, Director of Life in Focus Education of Santa Barbara, Member of the South Coast Task Force on Youth Safety of Santa Barbara, and founder of New Beginning Community Church.

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