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5 honorees recognized during YMCA gala

5 honorees recognized during YMCA gala
Yasmin Beers, Glendale city manager, was an honoree recognized during the gala fundraiser. Others pictured are board members David Chianello, left, and Nora Yacoubian, YMCA president and chief executive George Saikali, board member Zaven Kazazian and board chair Steve Bullock. (Courtesy of the YMCA of Glendale)

The YMCA of Glendale held its fourth annual fundraising gala recently, with the organization bringing in approximately $55,000 in donations.

With Zaven Kazazian serving as the master of ceremonies, co-chairs and YMCA board members David Chianello and Nora Yacoubian as well as board chair Steve Bullock welcomed approximately 300 guests at the Renaissance banquet hall in Glendale.

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Bullock highlighted two YMCA initiatives that were started this year — a youth and government program and a program called “Mission Possible.”

“We have a delegation of eight high school teens doing everything they need to go to Sacramento next year with 4,000 other youth and represent Glendale for the first time in many years,” he said.

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He added that “Mission Possible” is a program that opens up career opportunities that may have seemed previously out of reach for high school students.

As part of the event, five awards were presented to longtime supporters of the nonprofit organization: George Issaians was presented with the Legacy Award; lifelong Glendale resident and YMCA camp development director Ray Calame with Camp Fox received the Spirit Award; Rev. Berdj Djambazian was given the Star Award; H.L. Moe Plumbing was honored with the Corporate Partner Award; and Yasmin Beers, Glendale’s city manager, received the Leadership Award.

George Saikal, chief executive of the YMCA of Glendale, outlined why the honorees were chosen.

“These individuals have had a major impact on the success of the Y. They have remained steadfast and dedicated, and we view them as ambassadors in upholding our positive image,” he said.

Also noteworthy was the record year the YMCA had for sending kids to summer camp.

“We had 1,407 kids attend Camp Fox this year. A record year for us due to the leadership of director Ray Calame,” Saikali said, adding that Calame has been involved with Y camp programs for nearly 55 years.

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