BRIDGE Awards New Business/Accounting Scholarships to Residents of Affordable Housing

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, November 17, 2017—BRIDGE Housing, a leading nonprofit developer of affordable homes, today announced five winners of a business and accounting scholarship established in memory of the late Kent Colwell, a longtime BRIDGE friend and Board member. 

The recipients, all residents of BRIDGE properties, were selected through a competitive process; each will receive up to $10,000 for up to four years to use for tuition, books, child care and other expenses while pursuing their degrees. The 2017 recipients are:

  • Diane Atkinson (Oakland, CA), who came of age when women were not encouraged to pursue technology careers, has worked as a field organizer, arts advocate and computer consultant. Today, Diane is studying applied computer information systems and cyber security; she plans to enroll in business development classes with a goal of launching an IT security firm. She is proud to be a role model for her nine-year-old granddaughter.
  • John and Kristina Metzger (Carlsbad, CA) set aside their own career aspirations while raising three sons who excelled in high school and college. Inspired by their kids, John and Kristina decided to go back to school and build new careers; they are completing A.S. degrees in Accounting and intend to pursue B.S. degrees, also in Accounting. As in the board game of “Life,” said John, “it is never too late to adjust your forward moves.”
  • Allan Paisley (San Francisco, CA) has worked in the hotel industry in many capacities, from front-line customer service to night auditor. To achieve his dream of becoming a hotel manager, he completed community college studies in hospitality, food and beverage management and culinary arts, and is earning a B.S. in Business Management.
  • Brandon Pierce-Johnson (San Leandro, CA) has built a stellar track record in customer service and operations, yet he needs a college degree to advance his dream career in property management. He is now enrolled in a B.A. program in Business Management. “I want to be able to show my children that they can reach their goals in life if they just do that: reach,” said Brandon.

“It means a lot to us knowing such hardworking and deserving people have been awarded scholarships bearing Kent’s name,” said Peggy Colwell, Kent’s wife of 52 years.  “I know if Kent were here he would join me in wishing them the best of luck as they pursue the goal of a higher education.”

“Education can transform people’s lives in so many ways,” said BRIDGE President and CEO Cynthia Parker. “We’re proud to honor Kent’s tremendous legacy, and we are grateful to the generous donors who made these scholarships possible.”

For more information about BRIDGE Housing, visit

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