Hungry Valley SVRA Landscape

Olmsted Award
Leadership and Vision

OGALS Image 
Office of Grants and Local Services (OGALS) 
External Affairs Division

Pictured from left to right: Director Lisa Mangat,
 Viktor Patino, Richard Rendon,
 Deputy Director External Affairs Sedrick Mitchell, 
Jeanne Ekstrom, Natalie Bee, Jana Clarke,
 Chief Jean Lacher holding trophy, 
Lee Butterfield, Karen Arias, Melinda Jacobs, Barbara Baker,
Stephanie Schiechl, Paula Jow, Bill Meyer, and Cristelle Erikson. 
Missing from photo: Lehua Anderson, Luan Aubin, Mary Baum,
 Lowell Landowski, Karen Sims, & Melinda Steinert. 

The Office of Grants and Local Services worked with cities, counties, districts, and statewide nonprofit organizations to help create twelve new parks in underserved communities last year. 
Pogo Park and the City of Richmond were the first to install a zip line, pictured below, in their new neighborhood park, funded through a Proposition 84 - Statewide Park Program grant.

Pogo Park Project image

Hill Award

Mike Lynch image 
Michael G. Lynch
 State Park Peace Officer/Ranger

  Interpretation & Education Division 

Michael was the driving force behind State Parks' 150th Anniversary commemorations held during 2014. He was instrumental in organizing the statewide events, partnering with Yosemite National Park for shared celebrations, ensuring Sacramento's memorials were successful, and leading staff and volunteers throughout the State to succeed in their various roles. Michael's boundless energy and selflessness are awe-inspiring.

Drury Award
Professional Integrity

Vincent Cicero image

Vincent Cicero
Senior Environmental Scientist
San Luis Obispo Coast District

While facing disappointing setbacks and challenging obstacles, Vincent continues to help the Department work through many environmental conflicts, all-the-while forging important partnerships. Over the last 23 years, Vincent confronted barriers and successfully gained many victories for the San Luis Obispo coastal ecosystem.
Mott Award

Web Team image

Web Team Modernization Project
 Adam Lum, Kelly Thorn and Oscar Vasquez
System Software Specialists II
Administrative Services Division

The team took initiative to add a modern level
 of design to the California State Parks'
public website. During times of hard budget
 cuts and political challenges,
 the team presented their concepts 
and were able to gain management support
 to implement their ideas at a
minimal cost and give the Department's
 website a bold new look.

Dewitt Award

Environmental Traveling Companions image

Environmental Traveling Companions (ETC) 
Accepted by Diane Poslosky, Executive Director
Marin District
Pictured Left to Right: Director Lisa Mangat, Diane Poslosky, Gabrielle Thompson, and
 Superintendent Danita Rodriguez

Environmental Traveling Companions has been instrumental in partnering with California State Parks to provide accessible, educational, and life-changing outdoor adventures for more than 60,000 people with disabilities, as well as youths from economically disadvantaged areas in California. Their outdoor adventures include kayaking at Tomales Bay and Angel Island, camping, river rafting and cross-country skiing near Calavaras Big Trees.  The exceptional quality of ETC's programs, the devotion of volunteers, the spirit of participants, and the loyalty of clients and donors has been continuous for 40 years. 
Dewitt Award

Gary Eagles image

Humboldt County Office of Education (HCOE)
 Accepted by Dr. Garry T. Eagles
Superintendent Humboldt County Schools 
North Coast Redwoods District

HCOE has integrated its educational mission with the Parks Online Resources Teachers and Students Program (PORTS), which now brings state parks experiences to more than 8,000 K-12 students throughout California each year. The financial, technical, administrative, and curriculum support HCOE provides to the PORTS program substantially enhances the Department's educational efforts in support of our mission. Through HCOE's Redwood Ed-Ventures program, their environmental efforts teach the students about California's precious redwoods and northern California's sensitive ecosystem.

Ingenuity Award

Phiffer Big Sur Campfire Renovation Team
Pfeiffer Big Sur SP Campfire Renovation Team
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
Monterey District

Pictured from left to right: Patricia Clark-Gray,
Sara Arnett, Christopher Fridrich,
and Michael Zuccaro.
 Not pictured: Matthew Bischoff, Joan Carpenter, Jeffrey Frey, Delane Hurley, Robin McManaman,
 Larry Tierney, Mr. Martin Slanina of Monterey Bay Construction, and Mr. Joshua Towne of Better Presentation Systems.

The Campfire Center Renovation Team managed the projects for the new  audio-visual equipment installation, new  electrical system, improved walkways, and the new  benches (below) built to reflect the classic rustic style of the past.

 Pfeiffer Big Sur SP Campfire Bench
Ingenuity Award

Stout Research Mammoth Team image
Sand-Mammoth Excavation Project
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (ABDSP)
 Stout Research Center
Colorado Desert District

Pictured from Left to right Robert Keeley, Jon Gilbert, Linda Gilbert, Sandra Keeley and team leader Dr. Lyndon Murray, State Park Paleontologist.

The Sand-Mammoth Excavation team did the planning and followed their blueprints to successfully excavate from the desert a partial mammoth skeleton, which included the mammoth's 4,000-pound skull and its tusks. 

Anza-Borrego Desert Mammoth Skull image

Special Commendation Award

Larry Felton image
Larry Felton
Associate Systems Software Specialist 
 Retired Annuitant

Larry Felton was a Senior State Archaeologist before he retired in 2010. However, with his understanding of both cultural resources and information technology, he was requested to come back  and help develop and implement major digital data management upgrades to the Department's vast cultural resources database.   

Special Commendation Award

 Louis Nastro Image
Louis P. Nastro
Associate Park and Recreation Specialist 
Assistant to the California Parks and
Recreation Commission

Louis oversaw  the incorporation of the live webcasts for Commission meetings, and has for over ten years been an excellent administrative manager and liaison between Commissioners and Departmental staff. His extreme hard work and dedication are noteworthy and valued by the Director, Commission members, and staff.   


Special Commendation Award

Maria Cordero Ripani image
Maria Cordero Ripani
Communications Operator, Northern Communication Center (NorCom)
Law Enforcement and Emergency
 Services Division (LEESD)

Maria was able to calmly sustain communications with a suicidal caller for more than forty-five minutes until the caller finally gave her his location and she was then able to dispatch help to him.
Special Commendation Award

Victoria Yturalde image
Victoria Yturralde
 Staff Park and Recreation Specialist
Interpretation and Education Division

Victoria led the artistic publications and graphics team to create amazing brochures, posters, exhibits, and historical depictions of California for the State Parks 150th Anniversary commemorations held throughout the state.

Special Commendation Award

PORTS Team image
Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS)

Pictured from Left to Right:  Leslie Minium,
 Ryan Spencer, LuAnn Thompson, 
 Jennifer Langer, Vonnie Lemke,
 Jennifer Dandurand, and Rhiannon Sims. 
Missing from photo:  Phillip McDonald and
 Casey Dexter-Lee

The 2014 roster of PORTS interpreters brought state park educational outreach to California’s urban, rural, and underserved children via their interactive online performances. 

 Jennifer Dandurand is pictured at right, outside of Los Angeles with the PORTS technical cart.

PORTS Mobile Cart

Special Act Award -
Extraordinary Act of Heroism

Stephen Williams imageStephen Williams
Park Maintenance Worker I
Silverwood Lake State Recreation Area
Tehachapi District

Stephen rescued a drowning woman on Labor Day 2014, when he jumped into Cleghorn Swim Beach Area at Silverwood Lake, boots and all, and pulled her limp body from eight feet below the lake’s surface. Stephen swam her to the beach and once
 she was out of the lake, she dislodged water from her lungs and began to breath. Lucky for her, Mr. Williams is not only
 a Maintenance Worker, he 's also a
good swimmer.
Special Act Award -
Extraordinary Act of Heroism

Christopher Hoffman image
Christopher S. Hoffman
Park Aide
Angeles District

Christopher rescued two children and one adult from drowning when he was off-duty and camping with friends at Thornhill-Broome State Beach. Professionals and witnesses described the situation as extremely dangerous and Chris literally risked his own life to save 
three others. 

Special Act Award -
Extraordinary Act of Heroism

Daniel Perata image
Daniel Perata
State Park Peace Officer/Ranger
 Hungry Valley State Vehicular
 Recreation Area (SVRA)

Officer Perata was able to rescue an Amber-alerted- kidnapped child after Perata encountered a suspicious truck parked on the roadside near Hungry Valley SVRA. Perata was by himself but had to act quickly and without backup in order to subdue a belligerent, large-sized man attempting to escape with the victim. Backup arrived soon thereafter to assist Perata with the arrest. The kidnapper was headed to the Mexican border and if Perata had not intervened, at great risk to his own life, it is likely the boy would not have been rescued.

Hungry Valley State Vehicular Recreation Area

Hungry Valley SVRA Image

Ranger Walking Away image