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September 03, 2003

Gavilan College honors volunteerism and service with 2003 Community Spirit Awards

--Annual awards are presented in Morgan Hill, Gilroy, and San Benito County, recognizing individuals, businesses, and organizations who make their communities great.--

Gavilan College announces the presentation of 2003 Community Spirit Awards. As in years past, three sets of awards will be presented, in the communities of Morgan Hill, Gilroy, and San Benito County.

The first set of awards will be presented in Morgan Hill, at the Morgan Hill Chamber of Commerce breakfast on September 4, 2003, at The Golden Oak Restaurant, Condit Road, Morgan Hill. The breakfast begins at 7:30 a.m.

The three recipients of the 2003 Morgan Hill awards will be Karen Crane (individual)., Booksmart (business) and Leadership Morgan Hill (organization.) Laura Perry, president of the Gavilan College board of trustees, and Gavilan College president Steve Kinsella will present the awards.

Community Spirit Awards are presented by the Gavilan College Board of Trustees to citizens who make significant contributions to their community. The awards' purpose is to recognize, and celebrate accomplishments that benefit the community, and to increase recognition and awareness of contributions across the communities that are served by Gavilan College. In so doing the college aims to build a bridge of respect and service across the district. One award in each community is given to an individual, one is given to a business, and the third is given to an organization.

Community Spirit Awards were instituted in 1999 by the Gavilan College Board of Trustees in Board Resolution 739 which states, in part, "whereas any celebration of specific or general accomplishment constitutes a symbolic triumph for all within the community....therefore be it resolved the Gavilan Joint Community College District will establish an appropriate method by which to recognize and celebrate citizens." Any member of the Gavilan College community may nominate a candidate for recognition. The nominations are then discussed in committee and presented to the President's Council.

Last year's award winners in Morgan Hill were Betsy's Restaurant, Dr. John Quick, and the Mount Madonna YMCA.

Following is information about this year's winners:

Karen Crane:
Karen Crane is an individual who has made a difference in the quality of life in Morgan Hill. Through her efforts and strong love of our country, love for our community and for children and music, she began what we now know as The Patriotic Sing Festival almost 20 years ago.
Karen has donated her time, energy and efforts to teach young children a love of our country through patriotic music. Whenever there is an occasion to celebrate our country's heritage - such as the opening of the Morgan Hill Community and Cultural Center, The 9/11 Remembrance, The Relay for Life, and the annual July 4th celebration, Karen has 50+ children ready to perform. This is inspirational to the audience and performers alike. America's birthday begins in Morgan Hill with the Patriotic Sing on July 3rd, and culminates as the children perform before the July 4 fireworks to a huge audience.
Karen is also a Boy Scout Leader and coordinates the clean-up efforts of the scouts at Morgan Hill events.

Booksmart:
With extraordinary dedication to the community of Morgan Hill, co-owners of BookSmart Brad Jones and Cinda Meister have been in business in downtown for 8 years. Their store is open for many non-profit organizations to meet in a warm, friendly atmosphere.
BookSmart is always willing to dedicate time, knowledge and donations to community events and non-profit organizations. One of BookSmart's passions is education. Brad and Cinda have donated books and supplies to local schools, assisted in founding the Britton Middle School reading program, and sit on the Board of Directors for the Morgan Hill Charter School. BookSmart is a founder of the Friday Night Music Series and continues to donate a lot of time and effort to it's success.

Leadership Morgan Hill:
Leadership Morgan Hill has been in existence since 1995. It's mission is to ignite the passion, inspire the commitment, and sharpen the skills of the leaders who will create a dynamic Morgan Hill. The organization has a volunteer board of directors. It has graduated to date 130 students from the annual nine-month program and many now hold positions of importance in the community. the curriculum provides participants with an in-depth knowledge of the local political, economic, and governmental structures.
The impact can be seen in our city government, directors of profit and non-profit boards of directors and business executives and leading entrepreneurs. The graduates of this program inspire others to lead in a like manner. The 15 volunteer board members sold over 200 tickets to the organization's recent fundraiser, including a silent auction, which netted over $43,000.

The Gavilan Joint Community College District serves the communities of South Santa Clara County and San Benito County, including Coyote Valley, Morgan Hill, San Martin, Gilroy, Hollister, and San Juan Bautista.

For more information about the Community Spirit Awards, please contact Jan Bernstein Chargin, Director of Public Information at (408) 848-4724.

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Last modified: August 17, 2011
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