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Enhancing Our Quality of Life

Board of Supervisors to Honor Local Heroes of Human Services

Human Services Coordinating Council
Ann Edwards

11/14/2011 10:00 PM

Media Contact:

Laura McCasland    (916) 875-2008


Sacramento, CA - The Fifth Annual Heroes of Human Service Awards Recognition event will take place tomorrow, November 15, 2011 during the county’s Board hearing.  The awards ceremony, presented by the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors and the county’s Human Services Coordinating Council, will honor residents of Sacramento County who have touched the lives of others through their advocacy, dedication, service and support.

When:  09:45 a.m. – Tuesday, November 15, 2011 – Reception to follow
Where: County of Sacramento Administrative Building
1st Floor, Board Chambers
700 H Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

Great photo opportunity!
Honorees and Honorable Mentions available after ceremony for interviews – THEIR STORIES ARE FASCINATING AND INSPIRING

During the ceremony, each Supervisor will present resolutions to honorees from their district and also recognize several outstanding honorable mention candidates.  A total of 16 honorees and 14 honorable mention candidates will be recognized from the five supervisorial districts.

The Honorees:

District 1
Anita Barnes
Sheila Boxley
Leoma Lee

District 2
Hilda Curry
Leonard Lew
Officer Manuel Saenz

District 3
James Donoghue
Chris Faria
Betty Reuben
Laura Walker

District 4
Clay Gaunt
Ada Fong
Michelle Pearson

District 5
Al Baldwin
Dr. Orie Alfred Brown, Sr
LeRoy Kuykendall

Additionally, 14 Honorable Mention candidates will be recognized:
Ronald T. Montez, Leslie Napper, Trino Richard Savala, Jason Scanlan, Dr. Bobby J. Davis, Victor Bonanno, Dr. John Chuck, MD, Stephen Golka, Lisa Ruttan, Kenny Alvarado, Kendra Lewis, Dr. Hazel W. Mahone, Jasmine Micheaux and Trisha Seastrom.

The work of these heroes can be exemplified through the stories of Honorees like Clay Gaunt, a twelve- year old boy.  Clay started a campaign three years ago, called “Fill A Heart.”   Through this annual event, he seeks the help of community leaders, businesses and friends to collect items for children who must stay in the hospital for any length of time.  Clay is also a volunteer for MDA.  Recently, he was a spokesperson for the Jerry Lewis Tele-A-Thon; through his participation, he persuaded Safeway to donate thousands of dollars.  Clay also has an annual bake sale, “Cookies for Cancer Patients” to raise money to find a cure for cancer, especially for kids.  At 12 years of age, it seems as if he is just getting started…can you imagine what he will do as an adult!

Betty Reuben, an 89 year old woman with more energy than most half her age, to this day chairs the Family Shalom, a subcommittee of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW).  As chair, Betty leads the discussion, assigns tasks, and feeds the dozen or so members during monthly meetings at her home.  One focus of Betty’s Family Shalom Committee is to address the trafficking of young women.  Another focus of Betty’s committee, in collaboration with the Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region, has sponsored a series of workshops for the general Sacramento community revealing risk factors for elder abuse, legal ramifications for the victim and the family, and what to do if someone you know is a victim of financial or physical abuse.    In 1986, when Betty and other members heard a speaker suggest the Jewish community could do more for people with AIDS, Betty and a few other members decided that one special talent they could contribute was cooking chicken soup.  They created a small package of the soup, added chala (a twisted egg bread ritually eaten on Friday night and prepared specially for them by Freeport Bakery) and applesauce.  They bring the soup packages to anyone in the community who signs up for the services that is HIV positive or has AIDS regardless of their ethnicity or religious affiliation.  Not only is Betty still the contact person organizing deliveries the last Friday of each month to two dozen grateful recipients, she is also part of the delivery team. 

As we look forward to the next year, our community will most certainly face a growing number of socio-economic challenges that will demand more attention from our human service providers.  These challenges provide our entire community an opportunity to engage in and embrace the efforts demonstrated by Clay Gaunt and Betty Reuben.  The Sacramento County Board of Supervisors and the Human Services Coordinating Council are proud to honor these Heroes of Human Service. 

CONTACT:   Jerri Thompson, Staff, Human Services Coordinating Council
Phone:  916-875-1250
E-mail:  thompsonjer@saccounty.go​v