Monday, Nov 07, 2016
Carol Marks
  • San Mateo County Veterans Commission to Honor Veteran of the Year

    The San Mateo County Veterans Commission will honor three individuals and a Peninsula church at its first annual Veteran of the Year luncheon held in appreciation of their notable commitment and significant effort to improve the quality of life for those who served our country.

    The inaugural ceremony will include a keynote speech by CAPT Duncan Smith, a highly-decorated San Mateo-born United States Navy SEAL who created the concept for the SEAL feature film “Act of Valor.”  Following his remarks, the Veterans Commission will present the following honors:

    • Enterprise of the Year, Reveille: Peninsula Covenant Church: The church’s Reveille program takes its name from the military bugle call to report to duty. The program sponsors monthly “Family Feat” meals and weekly desserts for veterans to help with community reintegration. Volunteers make quilts during the holidays, provide welcome care packages to long-term patients at the Polytrauma Rehab Center and helps military families with members suffering from traumatic brain injuries. 
    • Patriot of the Year, Carolyn Livengood: Livengood, a local journalist devoted countless articles and columns to veterans’ issues as well as serving in support of their needs and causes. Her involvement includes serving as President of the Avenue of Flags Committee which supports Golden Gate National Cemetery, testifying before the Board of Supervisors and volunteering for 25 years with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, Flotilla 15 at Oyster Point.
    • Veteran of the Year, San Mateo County Superior Court Judge John Grandsaert:  Judge Grandsaert served as a U.S. Army Reserve officer in the Judge Advocate General Corps and in 2012 launched San Mateo County’s Veterans Treatment Court to address the specialized needs of military veterans facing criminal prosecution. He also volunteers helping veterans at Stand Downs in Monterey County. 
    • Veteran of the Year, Tim Healy: Healy served as a rescue swimmer in the U.S. Navy and now works as a Peer Support Specialist at the Palo Alto VA Health Care System. His personal mission is to break the cycle of homelessness among fellow veterans and volunteers as peer mentor in Veterans Treatment Court where he is a shining example of moving from client to provider.

    The First Annual Veteran of the Year Luncheon will be held on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 at the Hiller Aviation Museum, 601 Skyway Road, San Carlos from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. 

    The Luncheon is SOLD OUT, however, media are welcome to observe the event and interviews with honorees can be arranged with prior notice.

    The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors established the Veterans Commission in June 2015 with a mission to promote programs and policies that address the unmet needs of veterans in the county. Established in 1946, the San Mateo County Veterans Services Office (CVSO) assists veterans in accessing state and federal benefits that help veterans, their spouses and family members. The CVSO also provides information and referrals to a wide range of services and connects veterans to programs such as the California Veteran College Fee Waiver for veterans and dependents.