PALMDALE – The League of California Cities selected Palmdale as a 2015 Helen Putnam Award winner at the opening general session of the League’s Annual Conference & Expo at the San José Convention Center held last week.
Palmdale won the Helen Putnam Innovation Award in the Public Works, Infrastructure and Transportation category for its “Season of Service” volunteer program. The Season of Service and complementary community events are an innovative, interdepartmental, community approach to the challenges presented by an aging infrastructure, reduced staff and diminishing financial resources.
Since its inception in 2013, approximately 1,580 residents have participated in 14 community engagement events, 12 of which were specific Season of Service events, providing 6,140.5 hours of time.
Palmdale’s Season of Service program begins in January in recognition of the MLK Day of Service and continues through April, culminating in Global Youth Service Day.
The 2015 Season of Service was held the fourth Saturday, from January through April, and included “Desert Dazzle,” an illegal dumping cleanup event to help restore the natural desert beauty around 70th Street East and Avenue R; “Manzanita Magic,” a revitalization of Manzanita Heights neighborhood park, which included a custom designed and fabricated playground fence courtesy of Public Works Maintenance; “Courson Clean & Green,” a day of sprucing up the city’s first park; and “Global Youth Service Day,” a beautification of one of Palmdale’s most frequented parks.
“At each Season of Service event, you could see the positive energy and community pride, which continues to grow more and more each year,” stated Administrative Analyst Cheryl Hughes, who, along with Community Programs Supervisor Trish Jones and Councilmember Steve Hofbauer, was on hand at the League’s Annual Conference & Expo to receive the award.
About the Helen Putnam Award
Established in 1982, the Helen Putnam Award for Excellence program recognizes outstanding cities that deliver the highest quality and level of service in the most effective manner possible. Particular attention and credit is given to applications specifically advancing the League’s strategic priorities, which are determined each year by the board of directors.
The award is given this year in 11 categories, although it is usually given annually in 12 categories: CCS Partnership Intergovernmental Collaboration Award; Community Services and Economic Development; Economic Development Through the Arts; Enhancing Public Trust, Ethics, and Community Involvement; Health and Wellness Programs; Housing Programs and Innovations; Internal Administration; League Partners Award for Excellence in City-Business Relations; Planning and Environmental Quality; Public Safety; Public Works, Infrastructure and Transportation; and the Ruth Vreeland Award for Engaging Youth in City Government. Of 139 submissions, 12 were recognized for their outstanding programs.
Established in 1898, the League of California Cities is a nonprofit statewide association that advocates for cities with the state and federal governments and provides education and training services to elected and appointed city officials.
[Information via news release from the city of Palmdale.]