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September 29, 2022

Navarro receives Gavilan’s Community Spirit Award

An individual, a business and an organization from Hollister are
recipients of three Community Spirit Awards from the Gavilan
College Board of Trustees.
An individual, a business and an organization from Hollister are recipients of three Community Spirit Awards from the Gavilan College Board of Trustees.

Joe Navarro, a teacher at Sunnyslope School, received the award for San Benito County individuals at a reception Tuesday evening at Gavilan’s Hollister satellite campus in the Briggs Building.

San Benito Bank was the county’s business award winner and Community Pantry received the Community Spirit Award for county organizations.

Navarro was selected for his involvement in three roles of leadership in the community. For the last six years, he has organized Open Mic Nights at the Faultline on San Benito Street. Featuring poetry, songs and music, the twice-monthly event is the longest-running open poetry reading in San Benito County.

Navarro also co-founded Parents and Teachers for Educational Justice and volunteered for Apoyo Tarahumara, a support organization for Tarahumara Indians.

“I had no idea I was going to win,” Navarro said. “I was just notified last Thursday.”

Navarro said receiving the award is “just a bonus” as he receives enough gratification from his work.

“I’m involved in these groups because I believe in social justice and promoting culture,” he said.

Community Pantry received the Community Spirit Award for organizations for providing food to low-income families in San Benito County and also for helping families in hard economic times. The organization serves more than 700 families per month through donations, grants and volunteers.

San Benito Bank received the business award for its active support in the community through donations to and involvement with various local organizations. Additionally, the bank’s employees often volunteer at community events.

The Gavilan Board of Trustees presents the awards each year to individuals, businesses and organizations who make significant contributions to communities served by Gavilan College.

Two other sets of awards were presented earlier in two other cities served by the college – Morgan Hill in September and Gilroy in October.

Staff Report
A staff member edited this provided article.

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