Celebration of Leaders was last week at Computer History Museum, and I want to tell you why this event is different than all of the other fancy galas that you may have gone to in the past. Understanding this one detail about our community is definitely worth your time.
The Mountain View Chamber of Commerce does something that many other cities don’t. They allow local nonprofits to be part of the event, and to celebrate one of their own volunteers. Small local nonprofits wouldn’t normally be able to hold an event this large, and invite local dignitaries, and have it catered, with champagne, photographers, in a ballroom at the Computer History Museum. It just doesn’t happen because most small, local nonprofits are operating on a bare-bones-budget.
By inviting all of them to come together, in one big, glamorous event, the Chamber of Commerce gets to have a much larger event than if it were just Chamber members, and everyone in attendance gets to learn about the mission of all the nonprofits that participated. The nonprofits get to more exposure, more access to potential sponsors and supporters, and the Chamber of Commerce is truly connecting business, to nonprofits, to community members.
I thought it would be helpful if I shared who all of the nonprofits are (the ones that were part of Celebration of Leaders this year) and what each of them does for our community, if you don’t already know…
Community Services Agency: They’re the social services safety net for our community, because hardship can come at any time and knows no age limit. CSA honored Cathy Lazarus as their volunteer of the year.
Community School of Music and Arts: They are our region’s preeminent art and music education center, where people of all ages and abilities can discover, develop, and nurture their creativity. CSMA honored Mike Couch as their volunteer of the year.
Friends of Stevens Creek Trail: They promote community pride and involvement in the completion, enhancement, and enjoyment of the Stevens Creek and Permanente Creek Trails and Wildlife Corridors. They honored their founder, Rhonda Farrar, as their volunteer of the year.
KMVT 15 Silicon Valley Media and Television: Our local television station and they provide training in video production, media literacy, and a voice for hundreds of thousands of San Francisco Bay area residents. They honored Dave Kocharhook as their volunteer of the year.
Leadership Mountain View: It’s a 9-month community-based leadership program that is designed to connect Mountain View community members, enhance their leadership skills and inspire them to be active and informed community leaders. They honored Lynne Hansen as their volunteer of the year.
Mountain View Firefighters Random Acts: They assist victims of fire and others in need in our community, those impacted by the emergencies that the Fire Department responds to every day. They honored Mike Quan as their volunteer of the year.
Mountain View Public Safety Foundation: They support the Mountain View Police and Fire Departments, as well as the Mountain View Police Activities League (MVPAL) with the ultimate goal of making the City of Mountain View a better and safer place in which to live and work.
Women of Silicon Valley/WomenSV: They help domestic abuse survivors in middle-to-upper income areas to address the risks and challenges of being trapped in a relationship with a powerful, wealthy abuser. They honored their founder, Ruth Patrick.
Celebration of Leaders was a gorgeous event and I was thrilled to attend and do the social media coverage for the Chamber of Commerce. I love Mountain View and I’m proud to be part of this community.