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Tuesday, Sep 26, 2023

Fernando Award Foundation Announces 16 Nominees

The board of the Fernando Award Foundation announced 16 nominees for the 2022 Fernando Award, which honors volunteer and community service in the Valley region.

The board of the Fernando Award Foundation announced 16 nominees for the 2022 Fernando Award, which honors volunteer and community service in the Valley region.

The 16 nominees are:

Maria Barron, nominated by The Chrysalis Center and Christian Londono;

Michael Benedetto, nominated by Cheri Derohanian and Lori Kalman;

Victor Berrellez, nominated by Valley Community Healthcare and Linda Bessin;

Armida Colmenares-Stafford, nominated by the United Chambers of Commerce and the Valley Economic Alliance;

Steve Fazio, nominated by Los Angeles Police Department Valley Bureau Foundation and Rickey Gelb;

Jeff Friedman, nominated by The Alzheimer’s Association and Susan Pomerance;

Theresa Jackson, nominated by Hope of the Valley and Ken Craft;

Don Larson, nominated by California State University – Northridge and the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of the San Fernando Valley;

Carole Loweree, nominated by the North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce and Nancy Cartwright;

Tammy Scher, nominated by the Kiwanis Club of Entertainment Industry Group and the Sherman Oaks Chamber of Commerce;

Jane Skeeter, nominated by Woodbury University and Martin Cooper;

Kathleen Sterling, nominated by Gail Brow and Sherry Keowen;

Kevin Tamaki, nominated by VICA and Matthew Swearman;

David Tuckman, nominated by Allison Tuckman and Jeremy Sonenschein;

Sharon Udkoff, nominated by Los Angeles Jewish Home and Los Angeles Valley College;

And Jessica Yasukochi, nominated by Diana Sanchez and Stuart Waldman.

“This year’s nominees are a reflection of the types of community and business leaders who serve the greater San Fernando region,” Fernando Award Foundation board co-chairs, Mark Levinson and Pegi Matsuda, said in a statement. “This shows that despite the challenges everyone has faced since the COVID-19 pandemic, community volunteerism and engagement is more important than ever.”

Five finalists from the group of nominees will be announced during a reception on June 23.  The individual award recipient will be announced during the annual gala on Sept. 9 at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles.

“We are proud to serve as committee co-chairs of this year’s Finalist Selection Committee,” Marian Jocz of the United Chambers of Commerce and journalist Jason Schaff, said in a statement.

“Due to the impressive list of nominees, the Finalist Selection Committee will have a difficult decision selecting five finalists this year,” said Schaff.

In addition to Jocz and Schaff, the other committee members include Fred Gaines (Valley Economic Alliance chairman and former mayor of Calabasas), David Honda (Honda Construction), Sarah Horvet (Galpin Motors), Vahid Khorsand (city of Los Angeles), Darnell Tyler (NBCUniversal) and Marcella Tyler (California State University – Northridge).

The Fernando Award Foundation also plans to honor five Valley figures from higher education institutions with the Valley Hero award.


Joel Russel
Joel Russel
Joel Russell joined the Los Angeles Business Journal in 2006 as a reporter. He transferred to sister publication San Fernando Valley Business Journal in 2012 as managing editor. Since he assumed the position of editor in 2015, the Business Journal has been recognized four times as the best small-circulation tabloid business publication in the country by the Alliance of Area Business Publishers. Previously, he worked as senior editor at Hispanic Business magazine and editor of Business Mexico.

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