In an effort to encourage volunteerism and underscore one of the company’s core values, Paragon’s President, Joseph Morabito, established a Community Service Award for Paragon employees. Through the Paragon Foundation, the first annual Community Service Award winner was announced this month. The 2010 winner is Darlene Bustamante, Facilities Coordinator, based in Paragon’s Rancho Santa Margarita, California office. Darlene is active with several groups that have local, national and even international significance.
Darlene and others painted houses in Compton, California
First, Darlene works to support Just Do Good – The Compton Initiative. This group involves a community outreach program in Compton, California, a city known for violent crime as a result of gang activity. “Rebuilding Compton” has been happening one house at a time for the last four years. Darlene has been working with others on home renovations in Compton. Darlene also recruited other Paragon employees to help with this worthwhile project.
Carol and Darlene Bustamante at Camp Pendleton Marine base.
In addition, Darlene has been active with Project Prayer Flag for the past six years sending care packages to U.S. Servicemen in six troops on duty in the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan. Darlene also works at Camp Pendleton serving lunch to service men and their families during memorial services for soldiers lost in battle.
Darlene is also active in supporting All’s Well Homes, an organization that houses men and women who have had tragic upbringings. These people are often victims of abuse that are living on the streets due to addictions and other personal problems. Darlene has been using her skills to provide young women with training and counseling in computer skills, communication skills and interpersonal relationships. Darlene also assists by serving meals and providing food and clothing to those in need.
Darlene (right) promotes a community blood drive.
Next, Darlene organized a blood drive for the American Red Cross at our corporate headquarters resulting in a donation of 20 units of blood that will help save at least 60 lives. Finally, Darlene is constantly collecting canned goods, other foods and blankets for various charities in Orange County to help the less fortunate. As a result of all of her selfless volunteer work, Darlene has been selected as our 2010 Community Service Award winner. As a part of this award, Darlene will receive $500.
Other nominees for the 2010 Community Service Award included:
- Whitney Patterson for her work with Big Brother/Big Sisters of Dallas
- Carol Nichols for her work with Habitat for Humanity, Youth Front, Franklin Community Center and missionary work in China
- Elaine Martin for her work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters
- Tom True for his work with Big Brothers/Big Sisters
- Pratibha Godbole for her work with her local church
- Tracy Wyttenberg for her work with Season’s Hospice
- Teresa Mahlberg for her work with DAWG (Dedicated Animal Welfare Group)
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