Thumbs up, thumbs down

Gracyn Torigian, left, and Haroon Sekhon, both 17, shop for Christmas presents to teens in foster care.
Gracyn Torigian, left, and Haroon Sekhon, both 17, shop for Christmas presents to teens in foster care. cgeorge@fresnobee.com

Thumbs up to Issamar Sepulveda and her crew at El Parian grocery store and meat market for helping to deliver a baby boy this week inside the southeast Fresno store. Sepulveda, who owns the store with husband Juan Damian, said it was about 7:30 p.m. when a regular customer walked through the doors of the grocery and meat market. Clean up on Aisle One!

When Sepulveda heard the customer say, “Oh my God, I’m having my baby,” the owner sprang into action, summoning help from the cook, butcher and cashier. The butcher caught the baby in his apron and Sepulveda brought out blankets she keeps in her office, then cut the cord. Three ambulances and several firefighters arrived to help out. Sepulveda described 25 chaotic minutes it took for the entire event to happen.

On El Parian’s Facebook page, a post says the baby’s name is Toby. Congratulations and good job all hands!

Thumbs down to the Commission on Judicial Performance for taking the unprecedented step of suing state Auditor Elaine Howle, who is seeking records on individual cases. She has the authority to examine confidential records, which includes a caveat that none will be revealed to the public. She and the Legislature are legitimately interested in whether the CJP is doing its job, not in reporting slime to Fox News.

As CalMatters columnist Dan Walters points out, the Legislature needs to resolve the issue by elevating the auditor’s authority to constitutional status or making it clear that no agency can escape scrutiny, especially one supposedly protecting the integrity of the judiciary.

Thumbs up to the Schmidt Family Foundation and a community partnership, enabling Fresno FAX buses to offer a free, live bus-tracking app and route planner. Download Fresno Transit from the App Store or Google Play Store for free today. The community partners are FAX, local app developer Scholar Dev and ValleyPBS.

.Thumbs up to the Clovis North High School Advanced Placement government class taught by Clifford Nitschke of Fresno for donating money to buy Christmas gifts for teen foster kids. They set a goal of $50 per child and collected more than $700, shopping for 13 kids. In this politically divisive time, it’s nice to see government students being taught how to collaborate in a common cause.

Pooling their money, the students brought sunshine into the lives of teens going through tough times. Maybe the adults in government can learn from them.

Thumbs up to Bryson DeChambeau, Clovis East graduate and pro golfer, for getting a golf game with President Trump, Sen. David Perdue and Dana Quigley at his course in Palm Beach on Wednesday. “It was a game I will never forget! It also never hurts to come back strong on the back nine to win the match! The President is definitely used to doing that!” he posted online.

Thumbs up to Jim Pardini for being selected the Fresno Chamber of Commerce recipient of the Leon S. Peters Award. The honor was based on “outstanding leadership through devotion of his time and talents in order to better the community.” The winners must “exemplify the spirit of an enlightened, responsible free enterprise system.”

Anyone who has attended a banquet with more than 50 people probably has enjoyed Pardini’s hospitality as one of the Valley’s premier caterers and restaurant owners. The award will be presented at the Valley Business Awards Luncheon Feb. 13 at the Fresno Convention Center, 848 M St.

Thumbs up to the far-sighted vision of the late Ted Martin for providing legacy grants for the conservation and restoration of the San Joaquin River area that defines our region. According to his wishes, the Central Valley Community Foundation will award a total of $115,000 in environmental grants that meet his goals for river restoration. .

Martin was a businessman who often told stories of his childhood spent on the San Joaquin and Kings rivers. He established his donor-advised fund in 2011, and for two years, he was assisted in making grants to help sustain our rivers long into the future. Nearly $500,000 locally has been directed to help rivers and other environmental efforts.

Details are available at www.centralvalleycf.org/regional-sustainability.