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City announces 2010 Ruhkala Community Service Awards winners

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Rocklin community members and a local business will be recognized for their service to the city.
The city of Rocklin will make presentations to the winners of the annual Roy and Peggy Ruhkala Community Service Awards at a reception to be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 15 at Finn Hall on Rocklin Road. The public is invited to this free event.
The 2010 Ruhkala Community Service Awards will be presented to Bryce Jessup as the individual award winner, Gerry Lyons and WAVE Communications for the group/ business award and Francine Yorde as the Pioneer Award winner.

Individual/couple award:
Bryce Jessup will receive the indivudual award for his commitment to community service in Rocklin.
Jessup believes in community service. He personally models community service for the university’s professors, staff and nearly 600 students. Since moving William Jessup University to South Placer in 2004, Jessup has ensured that the first task for students each year is taking care of others, not themselves.
Each year, hundreds of students fan out around South Placer to donate their time and their skills for the benefit of nonprofit organizations. Over the years, the university’s students have performed about 12,000 hours of community each year – or some 60,000 hours of community service since the university came to South Placer in 2004. This culture of service at William Jessup University earned the university a group Ruhkala Award two years ago.
On top of his many duties as president, Jessup has given freely of his time to speak at countless community organizations, counsel newcomers and longtime residents and businesses, help students as a mentor, serve in the leadership of his church, moderate important community discussions and even referee some political debates.
While community service in Rocklin is important to him, he also sees the importance of looking beyond our community and even our country. He currently serves as chair of the board of Agape International, a local Rocklin-based non-profit group that helps rescue young girls from sexual slavery in Cambodia.
Jessup’s decision-making at William Jessup has also furthered our community. An example of that is when the university decided to locate in Rocklin and purchase the former Herman Miller factory, Jessup ensured that the unique and historic architecture of the facility – created by legendary architect Frank Gehry – was preserved. The effort won accolades for William Jessup University in many architectural circles.

Group/business award:
Gerry Lyons and WAVE Communications are the recipients of the group/ business award for their commitment to community coverage and for Lyons’ weekly community news show.
Lyons and Wave Communications have made it a priority to provide the best service available to both unserved and underserved residents as well as to area schools, libraries, hospitals and other institutions that are vital to our community, including programs and events operated by the city of Rocklin such as the Rocklin Jubilee (presented live on Wave channel 4), Breakfast with Santa, the Rocklin Theatre Arts organization, the Halloween Faire, and various activities at city facilities such as the annual Rocklin Preschool tricycle race, swimming lessons at the aquatics centers and many more.
Wave is a significant employer in our community and the state of California, Wave employs 85 people within our community and 255 in our state alone. And, Wave is a committed community participant. For example, not only has Wave stepped forward numerous times to be a major sponsor not only of city programs and events, but events presented by the Rocklin Chamber of Commerce such as Hot Chili Cool Cars (which is presented live on Wave’s Channel 4 local origination channel).
Hot Chili is a fundraiser for charitable organizations such as the Officer Matt Redding Scholarship Foundation. Wave has also provided TV news coverage of numerous special guest speakers at Chamber breakfasts, as well as the Rocklin Unified School District’s annual golf tournament/fundraiser for scholarships Scramble for Scholars.
Councilmembers have appeared many times either live or on tape on Lyons’ “News & Views” show and have been able to communicate with their constituents about many topics of news regarding Rocklin including budget cuts at the city, the efforts to create a better downtown area, and how residents can volunteer to become a member of our many boards and commissions which provide the city with many valuable services in our many parks as well the benefits of our other facilities.
Wave has also provided our residents with taped coverage of sports events including basketball games at Rocklin and Whitney high schools, Sierra College and coverage of both the Rocklin and the Tri-City Little League,
On a consistent basis each year, Wave provided thousands of dollars of in-kind donations of free television advertisements for various organizations to support Rocklin residents including the annual Rocklin Relay for Life, and events staged by the Rocklin Rotary Club and the Rocklin Rotary Club of South Placer County.

Pioneer Award:
Francine Yorde will receive the Pioneer Award for her years of commitment to the Rocklin Library, getting a new and expanded building and for service county-wide on behalf of libraries. Yorde has been a member of the Rocklin Friends of the Library for more than 25 years. During her years with the Friends of the Library, Francine has been involved with many projects and roles. She has done hospitality at board meetings and book sales for the last five years, is involved in the donation book sorting, and has been an active board member since 2004. She served as the vice president the last two years and is currently the president.
Francine is also a member of the City County Library Advisory Group for which she has been involved in the planning of the new Rocklin Library set to open later this year. She worked with the architect on the needs for the new library and is a member of the Grand Opening Committee.
~ Staff report