5th Annual Philanthropy Awards Continue to Inspire East Bay

By Mark Orcutt, Communications and Outreach Manager

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(Photo Credit: Amy Sullivan)

Nearly 300 people gathered at the Blackhawk Museum last week to celebrate the 5th Annual Philanthropy Awards Breakfast.

The Awards were hosted by the East Bay Leadership Council, along with presenting sponsor Wells Fargo, and honored an exceptional group of leaders who make the East Bay a more vibrant and caring place.

Honorees were recognized for their help in preserving historical artifacts and supporting the arts, addressing youth asthma, inspiring millions of dollars in donations to help sick children, feeding the hungry, bringing freedom and fitness to a class of sixth graders, mentoring youth, and contributing several lifetimes worth of philanthropic and civic leadership.

This year's award winners were highlighted on the Council’s blog over the past week and included Safeway, Clif Bar & Company, Waters Moving & Storage Company, White Pony Express, Thomas J. Long Foundation, Thomas DeJonghe, Dr. Washington Burns, Christina Adams, Arlie Smith, and Sue Rainey.

“The Philanthropy Awards is my favorite day on the Council’s calendar because today honors the organizations and people who make the East Bay such an inspiring place to live and work,” said Kristin Connelly, President and CEO of the East Bay Leadership Council.

The inspiration carried through the keynote address by legendary East Bay chef Alice Waters.

The world renowned Owner of Chez Panisse & Founder of the Edible Schoolyard who recently received the National Humanities Medal from President Obama has dedicated her life to celebrating the edible and the ethical and truly embodied the spirit of the event.

“Alice Waters has profoundly influenced the way Americans think about food and has inspired an entire generation”, said Steve Hitchcock, Area President of Wells Fargo.

The room packed full of business and civic leaders from across the East Bay included Assemblywoman Catharine Baker who presented a resolution from the California State Legislature in honor of Sue Rainey’s Lifetime Achievement honors.

“When I first met Sue, it was apparent to me right away what a vibrant and energizing leader we had in our community,” said Assemblywoman Baker.

Vibrant and energizing are great words to describe Sue and her commitment to the East Bay, but also ring just as true for every one of this year’s Philanthropy Awards Honorees.

The East Bay is an inspiring region because of the people who make it that way and the East Bay Leadership Council was proud to help honor their contributions to the community.

The Philanthropy Awards Breakfast will first air in its entirety on Contra Costa Television on November 26 at 7 PM. For complete listing of air dates, click here.