The College of Health and Human Services at Fresno State will honor 11 people at the annual Community Heroes Awards on Friday.
The award recognizes the contributions to life in the Valley made by local health and human services professionals. Each winner was nominated by a section within the College of Health and Human Services.
The 2015 winners are:
• Dr. Jennifer Crocker is medical director of Valley Children’s Hospital’s rehabilitation center. She created the Adaptive Sports Program, which gives children with physical and health impairments recreation and exercise options.
• Benjamin Cuellar is dean emeritus of the College of Health and Human Services. He helped to develop the Central California Children’s Institute.
• Brenna Hughes is the team-lead for speech-language pathology at Community Regional Medical Center. She organized the first Central Valley Concussion Consortium to discuss brain injury issues among young athletes.
• Victor Hugo Manriquez is an elementary school physical education teacher. He formed the Trucha Camp Physical Education Program in the Sanger Unified School District.
• William Mitchell is director of public health for San Joaquin County and has spent 40 years in the public health field.
• Dr. Gail Newel is director of obstetrics for UCSF-Fresno. She provides care for women and children both locally and nationally.
• Dr. Marcia Sablan formed the Sablan Medical Clinic in 1981 and has served on the Firebaugh City Council for 33 years.
• Paul Smith has been a physical therapist for 20 years. He’s served as a mentor for many Fresno State students.
• Dr. Debbie Tuttle is a nurse at California Oncology of the Central Valley. She has spent nearly 25 years helping breast cancer patients through their treatments.
• Anthony Yamamoto is director of social services and interpreter services at Valley Children’s Hospital. He has been a social worker for 40 years.
• Kathy Yoshida is director of interpreting at the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service Center. She’s assisted the community as a sign language interpreter for almost 35 years.
The ceremony will begin at 6 p.m. in Room 118 of Fresno State’s North Gym.
“Our heroes continue to serve as a valuable driving force to our schools, agencies, organizations and communities,” said Jody Hironaka-Juteau, interim dean of the College of Health and Human Services. “We rely on their expertise, passion and vision to move us forward in our commitment, as evidenced by our motto, ‘Live Well Central California.’ We are honored to recognize this remarkable group of individuals.”