Children and adults alike have been delighted by superheroes for years, and CALICO is no exception. We are lucky to have many heroes -- individuals who go above and beyond to selflessly advance our mission and make sure that children receive the help they need. Each year at our One Child at a Time (OCAAT) Benefit, we honor three of those heroes.We are delighted to announce the 2014 Awardees:
Stephanie Lynch, whose tireless efforts as an advocate for children are described below.
Keith and Susan Ortiz, who are honored for their extraordinary efforts to raise funds and awareness on CALICO’s behalf through their Tri-Valley Bodyworks, 20th Anniversary celebration.
Kate Tucker, who in her debut year as a runner for Team CALICO in the Oakland Running Festival, smashed her fundraising goal to contribute to a record-breaking year.
Since starting her career with the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office in 1985 (and prior to that in Napa County), Stephanie Lynch has been a steadfast champion of children. As a Victim Witness Advocate, a typical week for Stephanie can mean explaining how a trial works to an anxious eleven-year-old child who was sexually assaulted, or comforting the mother of a teenaged homicide victim. Stephanie’s work is undeniably heavy, but she brings to it a remarkable strength and resolve.
Many whose work is so emotionally draining go to great lengths to get away from the subject matter when they are not on the job. In some ways, Stephanie is no different. She balances her work life with time spent with relatives and activities that bring her pleasure. You’ll often find her doting on her niece and nephew, hiking down the coast, or tossing balls with her dogs.
But Stephanie’s extracurricular activities extend well beyond the typical escapes. She says she’s driven by her desire to help vulnerable individuals – with children and the elderly at the forefront – and her volunteer efforts on their behalf at CALICO have been extraordinary. Whether it’s co-hosting a CALICO event, selling raffle tickets for CALICO’s picnic, securing stellar raffle and auction prizes, directing and donating money to CALICO, or talking about CALICO to anyone she thinks can help, Stephanie’s advocacy doesn’t stop because she is off the clock.
Stephanie explains that she chose CALICO because “CALICO doesn’t get as much as it deserves – it’s a small group doing a huge job.” A huge job made that much easier because of heroes like her. Thank you to Stephanie and all of CALICO’s heroes this year – we are proud of our 2014 One Child at a Time Awardees.