By Terry Miller
Thursday’s annual Golden Plate Awards was perhaps one of the more emotional presentations, in recent memory, at the Los Angeles County Arboretum, Oct. 3 at Ayres Hall.
Two prominent volunteers and well-loved people were remembered posthumously: Jaylene Moseley and Carl Foote.
Hundreds of people from the area attended the lavish banquet. From fire chiefs to local and state politicians, they all gathered to honor some of the most tireless volunteers who help make Foothill Unity the preeminent nonprofit group which helps thousands of area residents who are less fortunate.
The 2019 Heart in Hand Humanitarian Award was given to Moseley and accepted by her husband who noted that his wife was looking forward to her 70th birthday in May, sadly she succumbed to cancer one day prior on May 25, 2019.
For three decades, Moseley was so much more than a fixture of Pasadena public life. Her tireless volunteer work seamlessly blended the worlds of business, nonprofit and community activism in unique ways.
As a true visionary, Moseley became a founding member of Pasadena’s Flintridge Center, which was the hub of her professional and philanthropic energies in Northwest Pasadena and Altadena since 1986.
Another emotional moment was when the Carl Foote Award was presented to Janet Wall and Laurie Orvis.
Carl Foote was an extremely popular and tireless, longtime volunteer with Foothill Unity Center. Foote, 59, was reported missing by his wife on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017 at approximately 6:30 p.m. Foote was last seen walking in the vicinity of Merrill and Highland avenues at approximately 10:30 a.m. Rescue workers from Sierra Madre Search and Rescue made the discovery of Foote’s body a few days later in Bailey Canyon.
Foote’s wife, Claudia, was discernably emotive as she grasped the award on which her late husband’s name was inscribed. Claudia was on hand to present the award to the two extraordinary volunteers who have helped thousands since their retirement in 2011 and eventually became co-chairs of the Back to School event each year at Santa Anita Park.
Board of Directors President Gary Kovacic presented each award which also included a presentation to Pink Transfer for their generosity to Foothill Unity each year.
The proceeds from the sold-out event will be put towards much needed fleet operations which are critical in delivering more than $2 million worth of donations annually.
Kovacic reminded guests that recently Foothill Unity was the victim of a panel truck theft. “Why would anyone steal a Foothill Unity Center truck?” Kovacic pondered. The stolen truck was found by Pasadena Police the following day in a local shopping center. Who took the vehicle? No one knows.
Foothill Unity Center began operations in 1980 by Josephine Anderson in a borrowed church closet in Monrovia, and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 1991. Since the beginning, it has been a continuous source of services for qualified low-income families and people in crisis. Their record of service has helped earn Federal designation as a Community Action Agency for the Foothill area, known as a lean operation-with an average of 94% or more of every dollar donated going to the various programs.
Volunteers are always needed and sincerely welcomed at Foothill Unity Center for many special events throughout the year. Hope, health, help is the fundamental motto of the center.
For more information call Foothill Unity Center’s Administrative Office at (626) 358-3486.
FEATURE IMAGE: The late Jaylene Mosely’s husband Alex accepts the award from Foothill Unity Executive Director Betty McWilliams and Board Chairman Gary Kovacic. – Photo by Terry Miller