Spirit of the Vision Awards

Award Criteria:

The Spirit of the Vision Award is given for achieving or significantly furthering the achievement of a clearly and specifically defined Greater Bakersfield Vision 2020 Strategy or Action. The individual(s) or organization(s) honored with the Spirit of the Vision Award shall be the first and/or clearly the most significant participant regarding the activity being recognized. Multiple Awardees for the same project may be awarded when supportive collaboration has occurred among the participants.


City of Bakersfield in recognition of the completion of the Mill Creek Project, updating and beautifying Central Park. The following departments are especially recognized: Economic and Community Development, Public Works, Parks and Recreation, Water. Presented August 19, 2009.

Tom Corson in recognition of his being the prime mover in the development and implementation of the Dream Center and Coffee Shop, which is focused on training and providing services to foster children about to exit the foster care system. Presented December 10, 2008.

Brent Dezember in recognition of his efforts to improve the image of Greater Bakersfield by constructing and contributing four beautiful new “Welcome to Bakersfield” monument signs, and arranging for their installation and storage, as appropriate. Presented April 30, 2008.

Castle & Cooke in recognition of their efforts to implement the community’s Vision of a green, pedestrian friendly community, through development of WINDERMERE and BRIGHTON PARKS residential communities. Presented June 1, 2006.

Chester Moland and the Golden Empire Transit District Board in recognition of their efforts to improve the air quality in Greater Bakersfield by the conversion of the entire bus fleet to compressed natural gas, and for their leadership in the image campaign by signage of the “Bakersfield Life as it Should Be” logo and tagline on Golden Empire Transit buses. Presented April 6, 2006.

Raymond C. Bishop in recognition of his vision and dogged determination to make the William M. Thomas Air Terminal a reality, and his successful efforts to double the number of airlines serving the community. Presented March 21, 2006.

Susan Hamilton, Claire Dunphy,and Melissa Grahek in recognition of their efforts that resulted in the implementation of recycling in the City of Bakersfield. Presented December 9, 2003.

Councilmember Mike Maggard in recognition for the process of involvement of stakeholders in the development of the Bluff Plan, a model of how the process of citizen involvement should work. Presented December 9, 2003.

Today Cleaners and Green Cleaner in recognition of their efforts to improve air quality by implementing new, non-polluting technology in their dry-cleaning business, and thus serving as a model for other businesses to help "clear the air". Presented May 5, 2003.

Building Industry Association of Kern County recognition of their efforts to improve air quality by supporting a ban on woodburning fireplaces. Presented February 11, 2003.

Bakersfield Police Department in recognition of their efforts to improve the safety and well-being of the residents through their Community Policing program. Presented September 18, 2002.

Jack Hardisty, Sue Benham, David Milazzo and the American Institute of Architects-Golden Empire Chapter in recognition of their efforts in implementing a Charrette process to develop design concepts for the Bakersfield downtown area. Presented May 10, 2002.

Alfredo Cuellar in recognition of his efforts to enhance the neighborhoods of Greater Bakersfield through murals as evidenced by his mural at the American Legion Hall. Presented January 30, 2002.

Reverend Jenell Mahoney, Reverend Joe Jordan and the Interfaith Council of Kern in recognition of their efforts in organizing the community-wide September 11th Remembrance Service and the subsequent organization of the Interfaith Council of Kern. Presented January 30, 2002.

Kern County Superintendent of Schools and the Bakersfield City School District in recognition of their unique, collaborative "Baby Steps" program addressing the need to engage parents as active participants and champions of their children's education. Presented September 6, 2001.

Class 2001 of Leadership Bakersfield-Team Three in recognition of their development of the "Youth Leadership of Kern County" program to be implemented for high school students, January 2002. Team members include: Beth Brookhart, Margaret Cushine, Perry Eggleston, Behrooz Fattahi, Patrice Lambourne, Robert Russo, Tracy Skinner. Presented September 6, 2001.

Kern High School District for the development of S-CAP (now KernLearn) and for their efforts to collaborate with multiple, non-unified school districts to develop an Internet accessible, county-wide, K-16 standards-based curiculum and assessment tool that can be accessed by students, teachers and parents 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

East Bakersfield Community Coalition for their grassroots efforts to make East Bakersfield a safe and nurturing environment. Presented January 29, 2001.

Project Clean Air for their efforts to improve air quality through education and collective action, which promotes the solution of one of the key elements of Vision 2020. Presented November 16, 2000.

Tree Foundation of Kern for their ongoing actions to improve the attractiveness and esthetics of the community through the use of trees. The desire for more trees for shade and greening of the community was one of the most consistent messages received throughout the Vision 2020 process. Presented October 18, 2000.

Kern County Board of Supervisors for its action to implement universal waste collection in metropolitan Bakersfield. This action is exemplary of the high level of city-county cooperation necessary in a major metropolitan community. Presented September 11, 2000.

Bakersfield City Council for its action to participate in funding improvements at Meadows Field. . This action is exemplary of the high level of city-county cooperation necessary in a major metropolitan community. Presented September 11, 2000.

Friends of Panorama Park for their efforts in planting 100 trees on the Panorama Bluffs. Presented June 19, 2000.

Congressman Cal Dooley and Congressman Bill Thomas for responding to an identified need of access to Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS) forms and information on a local basis, and bringing INS officers to Bakersfield on a monthly basis. June 19, 2000

Greater Bakersfield Vision 2020, Inc.
P.O. Box 1947
Bakersfield, CA 93303

P: 661.301.6763