Alem Terefe first left her home in Ethiopia on a college scholarship. She was 19 years old and headed to Almaty (formerly Alma – Ata) in Kazakhstan, now part of the former Soviet Union. She arrived speaking only her native language, Amharic, a tiny bit of English, and no Russian. Alem spent a total of seven years in Russia. She completed her veterinary medicine training (entirely in Russian) before immigrating to the U.S. in 1994.
Barbaro came from an athletic family and was identified early on as a baseball talent. It was no surprise when Barbaro, at age 11, was sent to the Sport Initiation School in Havana to be groomed for a career as a baseball player. It was a surprise when he illegally obtained paperwork to leave Cuba as a refugee and become a Major League Baseball player in America.
Charles Lee knows all about serving people. He learned by observing his parents, who ran several Korean restaurants, both in the country of his birth and in Los Angeles during his childhood. His parents served up not only authentic Korean barbeque, but also a helping hand to those in their community who were sometimes in need.