Greg Amsler, John Boston and Wayne Crawford.
The official 2007 Man and Woman of the Year will be named at the 40th Annual Recognition Dinner to be held Friday, May 4, 2007, in the Grand Ballroom of the Hyatt Valencia Hotel. The event will pay tribute to the top volunteers in Santa Clarita Valley and to past award recipients. It will benefit a number of charities and will include dinner, a multi-media presentation and the recognition ceremony.
Below are the biographies of three volunteers up for the award. Each one deserves recognition for the work they do. We will feature three nominees every day this week.
1 Greg Amsler
Greg Amsler is owner of the Salt Creek Grille in Valencia, but he may be better known for his devotion to community causes. Nominated by the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Health Foundation, Greg has served on their board for the past eight years. He has worked on all committees and at all levels at the Foundation, including the Capital Campaign, helping raise much-needed funds for the hospital; he has been a member of the Marketing and Board Development Committees, as well as the Golf Classic, where he contributed donations and recruited volunteers to run this fundraising event. He has just completed two consecutive terms as chair of the Foundation board, during which time he devoted his efforts to every philanthropic event benefiting the hospital -- from the Holiday Home Tour, the Golf Tournament, 10K Run, Holiday Tree Lighting, to acting as Master of Ceremonies at the Silver Rose Debutante Ball. During his tenure, more than $16 million has been raised for the community hospital. Greg has also served on the board of the SCV Boys & Girls Club Foundation since 2002, and has been a director on the board of the Michael Hoefflin Foundation since 2004. He joined the SCV Child & Family Center Advisory Board in 2005, and he has become a significant donor to this organization’s "Taste of the Town" fundraiser. Apart from all this, he devotes many hours as an assistant coach for youth baseball and AYSO soccer teams. And year after year he has contributed Salt Creek Grille gift certificates to numerous organizations which give a big boost to their fundraising efforts in the Santa Clarita Valley.
2 John Boston
John Boston, known to most residents as an authority on Santa Clarita Valley history and an award-winning Signal columnist, “Mr. SCV” is someone who constantly has given back to the community. He is nominated by the Zonta Club, whom he has helped as a volunteer auctioneer, and has helped them raise more than $100,000 over the past 10 years. He loans his expertise of the history of the Santa Clarita Valley to the SCV Historical Society, has worked tirelessly as bid-board closer for the Boys & Girls Club Auction, and has made numerous presentations to junior and senior high school students on the merits of a journalism career. He has not only been a cracker-jack auctioneer, but has donated many local historical trips as auction items for Zonta's Moveable Feast (featuring breakfast at The Way Station to campouts at Vasquez Rocks). He helped Zonta establish and maintain scholarship programs, specifically the Virginia Wrage Memorial Fund (whom he knew personally), helped establish and grow the Healthy Kids Club, giving life lessons and educational opportunities to young girls, ages 7-17, in Val Verde; helped Zonta continue its work with the Healthy Woman’s Day, a breast cancer screening program for under-insured women in the SCV. He has the honor of being one of Zonta's few non-member UnZons. Mr. Boston has been involved with the SCV Press Club since its inception in 1996, devoting hours to the SCV Newsmaker of the Year Awards Dinner, raising nearly $50,000 each year to benefit the First Amendment scholarship fund to honor Signal cartoonist Randy Wicks. He serves on the SCV Press Club’s board of directors and helps select scholarship winners. Since the 1970s, he has volunteered for the Boys & Girls Club Auction as a bid-board closer, helping bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars for the purchase of computers, game equipment, books, televisions, and field trips for the youngsters. Mr. Boston also devotes time and money to Carousel Ranch which uses equestrian training to help severely handicapped children. Each year he donates chuckwagon campfire dinners from his "Scared O' Bears" ranch to benefit this organization. An award-winning journalist, he recently was named the recipient of the Will Rogers Humanitarian Award by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. This award is given to a columnist who uses his public forum for the good of his fellow citizens, and whose work produces tangible benefits for the community served by his newspaper.
3 Wayne Crawford
Wayne Crawford, a resident of the Santa Clarita Valley for 38 years, is co-publisher of Inside SCV Magazine and co-owner of Santa Clarita Concrete and Valencia Acura. Nominated by Carousel Ranch, Wayne has been involved with charitable works and fundraising in our valley for more than 30 years. He has been a member of the HMNM Health Foundation for 12 years, where he's served on the Capital Campaign, chaired the annual Golf Tournament twice, was Corporate Partners chair for five years. He was Finance Committee chair for three years, and has been a major donor. He co-founded the annual Crawford-Fleming Invitational Golf Tournament, now in its eighth year. He takes a personal role in this event every year which benefits the Sheila R. Veloz Breast Imaging Center at Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital. During the past two years, he co-chaired the SCV Boys and Girls Club "Festival of the Trees" which raised an unprecedented $150,000 for the club. He has served as an Advisory Board member of the Child & Family Center for the past four years. But Wayne's work with the Carousel Ranch, which uses horseback riding therapy to assist disabled children, is exemplary. He joined the Carousel board in 2002 to assist with their annual fund-raising event, "Heart of the West." He recruited his daughter-in-law Jeanna to help, and she has become chair of this hugely successful fundraiser. Over the past 18 months, Wayne spearheaded the rescue and relocation of Carousel Ranch. When the organization was faced with eviction from its property in Sand Canyon, he located a new property in Agua Dulce. He helped coordinate offers for the property, assisted with the down payment and helped secure a mortgage loan. He donated his own time in clearing the 10-acre spread, bringing in his staff, his tractors and bulldozers; he worked with the County inspectors and contractors; and he supervised the entire conversion of the property -- driving the tractors, plowing out the roads, putting up corral fences, arranging dumpsters, and removing over 16 forty-yard containers of trash. Eighteen months later, his work has resulted in a new Carousel Ranch -- a nonprofit which now owns their own land. Wayne is a member of Carousel's Board of Directors and is now chairing the Ranch's $1.5 million capital campaign. For his work at Carousel and many other non-profit boards, Wayne was voted the "2007 Community Service Newsmaker of the Year" by the SCV Press Club. Through his ownership of Inside SCV Magazine, he has given much-needed publicity to numerous SCV charitable organizations, in addition to donating cash, sponsorships and web sites the these organizations.