Congratulations to Superintendent Alfredo I. Velásquez, he was selected for our editorial for people who “echo” of the year in Santa Cruz County. In October of last year, he was awarded by the Southern Arizona Association for the Educator of Young Children Award (SAZAEYC) for his work in strengthening connections between families, educators, and the community. He has a passion to provide every student the opportunity to succeed academically while preparing them for the challenges and opportunities life brings. Alfredo is a pioneer of education who brings passion and dedication to everything he does throughout his career.
Congratulations to our schools, school staff, and teachers for being selected as having hosted the most memorable event of the year school graduations! The heartache could be felt across Santa Cruz County as the Class of 2020, would not have an opportunity to experience a graduation ceremony like previous generations. Never did they imagine their graduation ceremony would have to be a virtual or graduation parades. Graduates this past year, learned they would not be able to hug their classmates, teachers, or family members who traditionally cheer them from the stands as they receive their diplomas.
Instead, Santa Cruz County schools across the county had to think of creative ways to celebrate graduations where only the graduates and a few family members were allowed to attend the graduation. Some family members had to stay in their vehicles or stand by their vehicles.
Memories of the years flowed with tears and cheers for the graduates, as their families and school staff celebrated the Class of 2020! It was a bitter-sweet experience, as no hugs or shake hands were allowed but this did not keep those in attendance from cheering the graduates, which made up for the lack of touch. Thank you for going above and beyond to teach and still stay connected with students! School staff, and teachers proved to be the true heroes throughout this pandemic. You showed us how valuable you all are to our community!
Congratulations Community Food in Nogales for being selected as the organization of the year! Last year, your organization hosted along with the government and private sector food drives to help residents across Santa Cruz County struggling financially. The Community Food Bank in Nogales adjusted their hours of operation and put new procedures in place to keep everyone safe. Your organization has also implemented important safety measures for food distribution. You are and will continue to be our “silent heroes.” We deeply appreciate everything you have done for our community throughout this past year.