Jul 9, 2018 | by Rachael Fowler

Reunified California South Division Encompasses All of Southern California from Mexican Border to San Luis Obispo

San Diego, CA. July 1, 2018 – After months of planning, The Salvation Army has merged two major California divisions in a reunification project resulting in the announcement of the California South Division. Services will span as far north as San Luis Obispo, continue through Los Angeles San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, and include San Diego – becoming one of the largest Salvation Army divisions in the United States and covering 51 Corps Community Centers and a population of 22 million people.

Divisional headquarters will be located in Long Beach for the time being with Regional Offices in San Diego and Orange County. The newly promoted Lt. Colonels John and Lani Chamness will serve as Divisional Commanders, having recently served in that capacity for The Salvation Army’s Hawaiian & Pacific Islands Division. “The California South Division will be on the front lines on the urgent issues facing the nation,” says Lt. Colonel John Chamness, “We’re honored to lead the hardworking men and women that make tangible differences in the lives of so many in the Southland daily.”

Lt. Colonel Lee Lescano will return to San Diego after two years in Long Beach to lead the Regional Office. Programs and services will continue uninterrupted in San Diego County, and The Salvation Army will continue to serve more than 250,000 people annually in the area. The generosity and open hearts of San Diegans will continue to benefit San Diego County.

“The Salvation Army’s commitment to outstanding service to the people of San Diego County is stronger than ever,” says Lt. Colonel Lescano. “We will continue to do all we can to expand and enhance our efforts to help those in need in San Diego County. “

The reunification of former Southern California and Sierra Del Mar Divisions will reduce costs, increase income and develop ministry on a larger scale and scope, such as life changing community centers in the inner-city, summer camps for at-risk youth, cutting edge veteran employment series, massive Christmas season food and toy programs and the facility to respond to natural and man-made disasters as they arise. The combined resources of the California South division will bring a renewed focus on providing services without discrimination and Doing the Most Good for the whole of Southern California.

Media Inquiries for San Diego County contact Rachael Fowler at 619-768-3671 or at

Media Inquiries for L.A, Ventura and San Bernardino Counties contact Robert Brennan at 818-648-9098 or at

Media Inquiries for Orange County contact Kevin White at 310-531-0127 or at

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