By Rodney Tanaka, Senior Communications Writer
POMONA, Calif. - 12/09/2008 -- The Boys & Girls Club of Pomona Valley honored two members of the Western University of Health Sciences family for their contributions to the community.
Pomona Unified School District Superintendent Thelma Meléndez de Santa Ana, who serves on the WesternU Board of Trustees, received the Golden Hands Achievement Award at the Boys & Girls Club’s annual gala on Nov. 22, 2008.
The Golden Hands Achievement Award is given to a person who has bettered the community in a significant way, said Victor Caceres, executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Pomona Valley. Dr. Meléndez de Santa Ana has changed the climate of the district and made an impact on the community in multiple ways in the two years she has served as superintendent, he said.
Harriet Pumerantz, a member of the Boys & Girls Club Board of Directors and the wife of WesternU President Philip Pumerantz, received the G. J. “Tuck” McGuire Memorial Award.
The Tuck McGuire Award is given to the board member who shows dedication above and beyond the call of duty, Caceres said.
Mrs. Pumerantz has been very influential in getting other potential board members to join the club, he said. WesternU students participate in health fairs and mentor the children.
“She’s an ideal board member,” Caceres said. “She is very active and has multiple areas of involvement.”
The 40th Annual Golden Hands Achievement Awards Gala is a fundraiser and a night of recognition for the people and businesses that help the club. The award recognition was a thrill and a surprise, Pumerantz said.
“The Boys & Girls Club is a very special group of people,” she said. “They’re doing a marvelous job keeping the boys and girls of Pomona as safe as can be. It’s an extremely important and worthwhile organization.”
The Boys & Girls Club is especially important to her because of her teaching background, Pumerantz said.
“I love this club,” she said. “The positive outlook they have is so encouraging. We all need to be more positive in life.”