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Claudia Thomas honored by Boys & Girls Club


Stan Naccarato congratulates Dr. Claudia Thomas as she is recognized as the 2008 Community Service Award winner by the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound. Naccarato was the initial winner of the award and it is named for him.

Dr. Claudia Thomas was recognized by the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound as its 2008 Community Service Award winner. The presentation was made during the organization’s “It Just takes One” luncheon Tuesday, June 17 at the Tacoma Dome Exhibition Hall.

Thomas, a member of Lakewood’s city council and the first female black mayor of a city in Washington, received the recognition for her years of dedication to youth and particularly for convincing entertainer Bill Cosby to come to Lakewood and present a program.

During the annual session, Rick Guild, president and CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs noted that construction will start very soon on the next Hope Center, located in Gig Harbor.

Another Hope Center in Tacoma will be for Don Topping. Friends of Topping, who also were alumni of Tacoma’s South Side Boys Club, presented a check from the lifelong bachelor’s estate for nearly $1.3 million. It will be used in the construction of Topping Hope Center and scholarships.

Stan Naccarato, the first community service award recipient and for whom the award is named, said he was pleased to see these awards presented to such outstanding people.

John Seals, a graduate of Wilson High School last week, was named as the 2008 Youth of the Year. He read his winning paper explaining what the club means to him. His story starts out with his father dropping him off at a fire station. He was 8 years old. He spent the next several years in foster homes and never felt he had a family. That changed when he started visiting the Boys & Girls Club.

Seals plans to attend Pierce College this fall.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of the South Sound have embarked on an aggressive program of building several Hope Centers patterned after the one already opened in Lakewood. A capital campaign to raise the $60 million needed for the projects in ongoing.

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