DAC Achievement Awards
City of Fresno Disability Advisory Commission

2016 ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Now accepting nominations for the 2016 Achievement Awards!

Application (MS Word Format)
Application (Adobe PDF Format)

The City of Fresno Disability Advisory Commission (DAC) will recognize individuals and organizations in Fresno for excellence in representing, collaborating with or serving individuals with disabilities as part of the celebration of Disability Awareness Month.

Award recipients will be selected from the following three award categories:

  • Individual
  • Organization
  • City of Fresno Employee or Department

Award recipients will be recognized for achievement in one or more of the following areas:

  • Improving the quality of life for individuals with disabilities
  • Advocacy for issues pertaining to individuals with disabilities
  • Volunteerism that has a positive impact on individuals with disabilities
  • Development of new programs or services impacting individuals with disabilities
  • Customer service to individuals with disabilities that is above and beyond the standard
  • Innovation or Entrepreneurship by an individual with a disability or that has a positive impact on individuals with disabilities

Seventh Annual DAC Achievement Award


: 2015 Award Recipients with DAC members

Seventh Annual DAC Achievement Award

Each year, in conjunction with the celebration of October as Disability Awareness Month, the City of Fresno Disability Advisory Commission (DAC) recognizes an individual and an organization that have improved the quality of life for individuals with disabilities in Fresno. The winner of the DAC’s 2015 Individual Achievement Award is Lt. Anthony T. Martinez. The winner of the DAC’s Organization Achievement Award is Housing and Supportive Services (HASS). The DAC also recognize City of Fresno Parks, After School, Recreation and Community Services (PARCS) Department for their ongoing efforts to provide programs and facilities that are inclusive of all members of the community.

Lieutenant and Commander of the Southwest District of Fresno, Martinez is recognized for his continuous commitment to improving the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through his volunteer work as member of the Lions Club International. The key projects for which he volunteers and endorses are all focused on serving youth and adults with disabilities, including those who are blind and have diabetes. Fellow Lion’s member Craig Cooper noted that, “I wish that you and the Commission could see just a small amount of what I have seen and you would understand that Anthony Martinez is worthy of being recognized. Melvin Jones once said, ‘You can’t get very far, until you start helping someone else.’ Anthony Martinez lives this with each beat of his heart.”

Housing and Supportive Services (HASS) is recognized for service that is above and beyond the standard and innovation that has a positive impact on individuals with disabilities. HASS was founded in 2000 by Dennis Torigian in order to provide stable housing and support services or adults with chronic and severe mental illness. “[HASS] provides the much needed structure yet allows for independence and personal growth for individuals with chronic mental health issues,” said supporter Harvey Hanemoto. “The facility provides this ideal balance infused with caring and accountability.”

City of Fresno Parks, After School, Recreation and Community Services (PARCS) Department is recognized for their ongoing efforts to provide programs and facilities that are inclusive of all members of the community. PARCS has been a vanguard for inclusive facilities with its role in the securing of funds and construction of the Inspiration Park. Inspiration Park is a premier universally accessible park and community center that serves residents with varying abilities of all ages. The park provides opportunities for children with disabilities to play and learn side-by-side with able-bodied children and promotes therapeutic physical activity for adults with disabilities, including our veterans. No other park in the Fresno metro area or the entire Central Valley provides the recreational and educational opportunities that will be available at the Universally Accessible Park. The park is slated to be open to the public in November 2015.

"We are truly honored to have such wonderful individuals and organizations here in the City of Fresno working on behalf of and in partnership with citizens with disabilities,” said Dr. Jenelle Pitt, DAC Chair. “Their daily commitment to increased community presence and quality of life is demonstrated in the work that is done over and beyond the call of duty. As we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, we are particularly reminded of the importance of equity and full participation of all individuals, which enhances our community."

Recipients will be honored October 22, 2015 during the City Council meeting as part of the commemoration of October as Disability Awareness Month.