When you think of Compton, Cricket is probably not the first thing that comes to mind. Compton is famous for many things, but in 1996 Ted Hayes and Katy Haber added one unlikely event to its reputation.

They went to Compton High School and started a Cricket team in an effort to keep kids out of trouble, an endeavor that had been surprisingly successful with the homeless population near Skid Row in Los Angeles ten years earlier.

Because of its success, the homeless team, known as the LA Krickets, had dispersed as its members were able to get on their feet, but Ted and Katy decided to take the same idea to Compton to help keep at-risk kids out of gangs. Since then, the Compton Cricket Club has evolved into an opportunity for young people to develop discipline and respect for authority.

Through the Club, individuals who would otherwise never step foot outside of Southern California have had opportunities to travel all over the world including Ireland, England and Australia. In 1997, the Homies toured England for the first time. They visited Prince Edward at Windsor castle and Buckingham Palace by personal invitation, and played cricket against the Windsor castle staff.

Pan-Pacific’s own Emidio Cazarez is the team’s Skipper and his brothers, Eric and Ricardo (also Pan employees), have been part of the team since they were in elementary school. Northern California employee, Raul Flores, and SoCal’s Ricardo Flores were also involved in the Cricket Club. They are passionate about using the sport to keep young people off the streets.

“Cricket is a gentleman’s sport,” says Katy Haber, team manager. “It was brought to America by the British during the War of Independence and is the foundation of American Baseball. Ricardo and Emidio are the creme de la creme - strong, principled, take-charge team members. I saw Emidio and Ricardo grow from kids into men. They went through some very hard times, but they both responded with grace.”

Katy considers the Homies her own family and has attended some of their family gatherings.

Now that all of the team members are grown up and starting their own families, the Club has taken a break, but they are hoping to continue the legacy of providing extraordinary opportunities to Compton’s young people through the sport of Cricket in the near future.

Emidio Cazarez, or “Jr” as he is more widely known, has worked for Pan-Pacific since 2008. His friend, Raul Flores, convinced him to come join us on the W Hotel.

“They told me Pan was looking for good workers and I should come over. I was in a good spot, so I hesitated at first, but eventually came over and now I’m glad I did,” says Jr.

Currenty working on 400 Broadway, Jr has also contributed to the Carlyle, LA Forum, LAX, UCLA Luskin, UCLA Teaching & Learning, Waldorf Astoria, Kaiser Baldwin Hills, Kaiser Santa Clarita, the Biltmore Hotel and a few other special projects. He loves working alongside his brothers and friends, trying to compete on who gets more done while at work. “Not feeling like you are working is always good,” he says.

When asked what he likes about Pan-Pacific, Emidio said, “I like the fact I can approach my superiors and talk to them like they are just one of the guys. I also like that Pan takes the time to show appreciation to its employees.”

Jr was raised in Compton, and now lives in Norwalk. He is Skipper of the Compton Cricket Club and is passionate about growing the sport in the U.S. He would love to use the sport to give future generations the opportunities he was lucky enough to have. He says he is just a regular, God-fearing man who likes to keep things simple.

Ricardo Cazarez is the Homies & the Popz’s keeper. He’s been playing with the team for nearly twenty years.

Ricardo was hired at Pan-Pacific five years ago, when his brother Emidio connected him with Frank Vincent. He is currently working on the Kaiser WLA project, and has previously worked on the LA Forum, Wilshire Grand, the UCLA Teaching & Learning Center, Waldorf Astoria and Metropolis.

Ricardo says one of the highlights about working for Pan is our core value of Family. He gets to work alongside his two brothers, Emidio and Eric, every day. He says it’s really important to look out for each other on the field.

Ricardo grew up in Compton, but now lives in Downey with his wife. They are expecting their first child.