The Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce is set next week to recognize recipients of its 57th annual Community Service Awards, over a year later than originally planned after the onset of the pandemic canceled the first ceremony in March 2020.
"Pleasanton, Let's Celebrate" -- a community event outdoors in Barone's Backyard in downtown -- is also now part of the business support organization marking its 75th anniversary during 2021.
"Since the COVID-19 pandemic has canceled countless in-person events in the last 18 months, the chamber is looking forward to gathering for a festive, feel-good evening to honor good people doing great things in Pleasanton and recognize the milestone anniversary as well," chamber officials said in a statement.
The ceremony will include posthumous recognition to Bernie Billen, winner of the 2020 Distinguished Individual Service Award, who died this past August after a long battle with cancer.
The award honored Billen for contributing to Pleasanton "through exceptional service to the community or philanthropic efforts."
Noted for her community spirit ever since she moved to Pleasanton in the 1970s, Billen was dedicated to a wide variety of organizations and activities such as the Pleasanton Downtown Association, the city's Centennial Celebration in 1994, the Pleasanton-Tulancingo Sister City Association and most recently Hively.
The other Community Service Award winners, who were also first announced last year, are as follows:
Lifetime Achievement: Vic Malatesta. "For individuals who have contributed to Pleasanton through exceptional service to the community or philanthropic efforts over the whole of a career."
Malatesta owned and operated Vic's All Star Kitchen in downtown for 25 years until selling the restaurant to enjoy retirement. A longtime supporter of Foothill High School athletics, Malatesta also previously chaired the PDA, the Chamber of Commerce and the Kiwanis Club of Pleasanton.
Chevron Teacher Award: Jonathan Grantham. Given to a standout Pleasanton Unified School District teacher, the award honors Grantham for his dedication as director of bands for Amador Valley High School, a comprehensive program with 350 participating students involved in different types of bands and ensembles.
Business Philanthropy: UNCLE Credit Union. "For businesses that have provided philanthropic service beyond the scope of normal business activity."
Excellence in Business: BumbleBee Marketing Services. "For businesses that have made a positive impact in the Pleasanton community through their achievement within the scope of normal business activity."
Green Business: East Bay Regional Park District. "For businesses that promote sustainable environmental business practices throughout their organization for the benefit of employees, customers or the community."
Excellence in Service: Spectrum Community Services. "For organizations that have contributed to Pleasanton." Spectrum is a nonprofit that assists low-income individuals, families and seniors in the Tri-Valley -- most notably by administering the local Meals on Wheels program.
The special event will run from 5-7 p.m. next Wednesday (Oct. 20) in Barone's outdoor venue on St. John Street with hors d'oeuvres and drinks. Retroactive, known for playing high-energy music hits from Motown to today, will be performing.
Tickets cost $75 per person to attend, with tickets available at www.pleasanton.org.