In 2021 we honored 4 local leaders with Community Hero Awards:
Catherine Somers is the Exec Director of the Los Gatos Chamber of Commerce. She exudes leadership and has worked around the clock to help keep her beloved town and businesses afloat during the pandemic and beyond. Her strength, intelligence and compassion for all is unparalleled. One word for her: innovative.
Alex Hult is the owner of Flights Restaurants. He has continually shown his true empathy for his fellow citizens. He is a leader and an inspiration to all. He is a do-er. When the pandemic hit, he immediately started a drive-through market where people could get everything from toilet paper to eggs. He gave meals to elderly and health-care workers...and still does. One word for him: incredible.
Kathy Mlinarich is the Director of Live Oak Senior Nutrition Center. She works tirelessly and selflessly to provide meals and more for the elderly and the homeless. She, is also, a do-er. One word for her: remarkable.
Coach Tiki Tikhonov is an ice hockey coach. Her whole “thing” is giving back. She is a mentor to many, fearless, and a prime example of what it means to be a volunteer. Her word: strength.
These are true heroes. These are the people that continually go above and beyond. We applaud them.
Metro Silicon Valley, the leading Weekly in the area, held a "Best Of Silicon Valley 2023" reader's poll and our Los Gatos Club came in overall in the "Best Non-Profit Organization in Silicon Valley" category - we came in 2nd place to Second Harvest Food Bank Silicon Valley and we can't believe it! What an honor to come in 2nd place to that fine organization!!
In 2022, our Club was honored to be awarded the "Best of 2022" in 3 different categories by the Metro Silicon Valley and the Los Gatan News. These were chosen by the public, who voted on-line, and we couldn't feel more loved!
Here's where we stood out from the competition:
Best Philanthropic Organization: Kiwanis Club of Los Gatos.
Best Outdoor Art Event: Fiesta de Artes (put on entirely by the Kiwanis Club of Los Gatos.
Best Charitable Event: Fiesta de Artes (put on entirely by the Kiwanis Club of Los Gatos).
Note that all proceeds from the Fiesta de Artes (the Los Gatos Art & Wine Festival) go right back into the community.
On Thursday 9/23/21, at Italian Brothers Restaurant in Los Gatos, we honored 3 very special people: Ellen Graff, MarLyn Rasmussen & Pat Jones. These three women were awarded Life Achievement Awards for their exemplary service to the Club and the community.
Ellen Graff was the first female president of our club, in addition to being the head of the Chamber of Commerce and owning her own business in Town. She is always looking to help: be it volunteering at the annual Fiesta de Artes, coming up with gifts for fundraising or helping kids in any way possible. Just ask her and she will be there!!
MarLyn Rasmussen has paved the way for many of us by spearheading and getting clubs established with the local schools. She (along with Pat Jones) started the Builders Club at Fisher Middle School, the K Kids at Van Meter and Daves Elementary, as well as other schools. Her drive and caring for the children is unparalleled.
Pat Jones also helped establish the Student Leadership Programs at the schools and her legacy is still thriving.
These are three strong women, three proven leaders, who have stood out and gone above and beyond. They have set a high bar, and all that we can do is try to emulate their success. Bravo!!