BURBANK -- Continuing a tradition half a century old, a group of
parents and volunteers were honored by the Burbank Council Parent Teacher
Association for their contributions to children.
The theme of April 26 service awards at The Castaway restaurant was
"Volunteers Help Light The Way." During the event, the PTA honored about
45 parents, volunteers and school officials who have made a difference in
"The people who are being honored are dedicated to helping students.
They are really a beacon in their lives," said Irene Parsons, a council
member who coordinated the event, which drew about 250 parents, teachers
and district officials.
PTA members at each of Burbank's 16 public schools nominated
individuals to receive the awards, said Anita Davy, council president.
There are 7,776 members of the Burbank PTA, she said.
"It's an excellent surprise. I've learned so much from meeting so many
children," said Paul Umpierre, who received an honorary service award for
his work at John Burroughs High School.
Umpierre, 61, works with the school's campus security officers. He
said he began coaching sports teams three years ago. Umpierre has also
chaperoned school dances and worked the ticket booth at school events.
Dede Duly, 53, received the continuing service award for her work with
the PTA over the past 25 years. Duly has held every position in the
parent group and has sewn costumes for the Burbank High School choir.
"There are so many people that could have received this award. I'm
very honored and shocked," she said.