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Rep. Napolitano Honors 2012 “Unsung Heroines” Women of the Year

May 25, 2012
Press Release

Photo: Front row, left to right: Sandra Kraft, Doris Koegel-Roth, Barbara Kalajian, Marisol Hernandez, Cynthia Gomez, Susanna Fajardo-Rovira, Rep. Grace Napolitano, Estella Estrada, Evelyn Eleccion, Gloria Duran, Jenny Chen, Esther Celiz, Guadalupe Bojorquez. Back row, left to right: Lupe Valdez, Carol Salas, Violeta Rodriguez, Suzy Rodriguez, Adriana Rodriguez, Olivia Roberts, Cassie Ritz, Lissa Palacios, Alice Nanez, Hermelinda Martinez, Faith Lungren, Irene Luna

(Washington D.C.) – Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano honored the 2012 Women of the Year “Unsung Heroines” for their exemplary volunteer service at an award ceremony at Town Center Hall in Santa Fe Springs.

“I want to thank all of these remarkable women who volunteer their time for our communities,” Napolitano said. “Their selfless dedication and tireless work are an inspiration to all of us. They do not receive enough gratitude for all that they do, and so today we say 'thank you' for making all of our lives a little better.”

 “I’m thrilled and still in shock, even a little embarrassed to be recognized,” said Olivia Roberts, who volunteers at Los Altos High School in Hacienda Heights.

“I am pleased and honored for this recognition,” said Faith Lungren, who volunteers at the Gabriel Foundation in the City of Industry. “I love doing the work and love working with the people that I work with. It’s a real privilege to be honored like this - frosting on the cake.”

25 women received the award. Each had their name submitted by their volunteer organization or community group which felt their contributions deserved special recognition. Napolitano gave out the award and thanked each woman personally.

 “I love serving my community and volunteering for the kids,” said Susanna Fajardo-Rovira, from the City of La Puente. “I recommend volunteering for everyone - our community needs a lot of volunteers for our kids who have only single parent families who need our help.”

The 2012 Women of the Year:

Guadalupe Bojorquez, LA County Department of Parks and Recreation - East Los Angeles       

Esther Celiz, City of Pico Rivera - Pico Rivera

Jenny Chen, Buddha’s Light Hsi Lai School- Hacienda Heights

Gloria Duran, City of Santa Fe Springs -Santa Fe Springs

Evelyn Eleccion, Good Neighbor Senior Club - Santa Fe Springs        

Estella B. Estrada, Silver Years Club - Montebello

Susanna Fajardo-Rovira, City of La Puente - La Puente

Cynthia Gomez, Garfield High School Army JROTC - East Los Angeles

Marisol Hernandez, William Workman High School - City of Industry

Barbara Kalajian, Holy Cross Armenian Apostolic Cathedral - Montebello

Doris Koegel-Roth, Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple - Hacienda Heights     

Sandra Kraft, Norwalk American Legion Auxiliary - Norwalk

Irene Luna, Palomares Park Senior Center  - Pomona

Faith Lundgren, The Gabriel Foundation - City of Industry

Hermelinda Martinez, St. Hilary Parish - Pico Rivera

Alice H. Nanez, Shade Lane Senior Club - Pico Rivera

Lissa Palacios, Eastmont Community Center - East Los Angeles

Cassie Ritz, Norwalk Community Coordinating Council - Norwalk                                          

Olivia Roberts, Los Altos High School - Hacienda Heights

Adriana Rodriguez, East Los Angeles Women’s Center - East Los Angeles

Suzy Rodriguez, East Los Angeles Residents Association - East Los Angeles

Violeta Rodriguez, Happy Years Senior Club - Montebello

Carol Salas, Pio Pico Woman’s Club - Pico Rivera

May Sharp, L.A. CADA - Santa Fe Springs

Lupe Valdez, City of Montebello – Montebello