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The Celebration of Leaders and ATHENA Awards Friday, May 13, in Mountain View will honor community leaders and their efforts.

A selection committee decides the awards from an array of nominations. The ATHENA Award for Excellence is being awarded this year to Ellen Kamei, whom several people nominated for the honor.

Kamei is a Mountain View City Council member and former mayor who is external affairs area manager for AT&T. Kamei is being recognized for her efforts in social equality for people of color and women, such as her work as the chair of the city’s Ad-Hoc Committee on Race, Diversity, and Inclusion, as well as efforts for youth and civic engagement and mental health services.

“There are few individuals in Mountain View who have done as much for forwarding the opportunities to women and being a mentor to women than Ellen,” said Peter Katz, the chairman and CEO of the Mountain View Chamber of Commerce.

Other honorees include the Fondo de Solidaridad de Mountain View (Mountain View Solidarity Fund), a multiracial and cross-class mutual aid fund led primarily by Latino parents. The organization’s goals include providing economic support to local undocumented Latino families during the COVID-19 pandemic who didn’t have access other resources, and assisting working-class Latino renters in Mountain View. The Fondo de Solidaridad de Mountain View has served the community for over 20 years. The organization raised over $100,000 in private donations and redistributed them during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Latinx community has been so unbelievably hit by the ravages of COVID, both in terms of sickness as well as economic impact, that these kind of efforts are just extremely important and very much appreciated,” said Katz.

The award for Community Champion is being awarded to Tom Meyer. He has served as executive director of the Community Services Agency of Mountain View and Los Altos (CSA) for over 20 years. After serving in the Peace Corps, Meyer has worked on an extensive list of community service projects to serve the community of Mountain View.

“Tom is probably one of the most unsung heroes in Mountain View,” said Katz. “When you talk about social services in the region, let alone in Mountain View, the name CSA always comes up, and you cannot mention CSA without mentioning Tom Meyer.”

The event includes a live auction fundraiser that supports the Chamber of Commerce and services such as Scholarship Mountain View, Leadership Mountain View and Artists Mountain View.

This article was originally published by Mountain View Voice.

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