For release on April 22, 2015   CONTACT: Margaret Petros, Event Chairperson
Executive Director of MAM - Mothers Against Murder
(650) 248-9529   UNSUNG HEROES HONORED WITH ANNUAL AWARDS   The Victim Support Network of Santa Clara County will tomorrow give its “Unsung Hero” awards to an inspiring group of public servants. Recipients include a cadet who rose to become one of the county’s most respected police chiefs and a Mexican Immigrant who went from working in the fields to working in hospitals to aid victims of sexual assault.   The annual awards, this year held at the Campbell Community Center, are intended to shine a deserving light on people who often work in obscurity to help and heal the county’s victims of crime.   “To some the criminal justice system may seem faceless, but I know that it is made up of so many selfless public servants,” said District Attorney Jeff Rosen, who is the keynote speaker at the noon event. “Today I’m proud to honor some of them who try every day to help people who have been scarred by crime.”   One of this year’s Unsung Heroes is Sexual Assault Response Team Nurse Dominga Villagomez. Villagomez came to the U.S. as an immigrant from Mexico. She began work as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner 2008. In addition to her overseas volunteer work, she volunteers to do SART Exams at the VMC South Valley Clinic. Villagomez also performs exams and is on call at VMC.    Other honorees include:
• Santa Clara Police Chief Mike Sellers;
• Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Carolyn Powell;
• Victim Services Probation Community Workers Suzette Sanchez & Irma Lara;
• Santa Clara Sheriff’s Detective Kelvin Mah;
• Sharan Dhanoa, Coordinator for the South Bay Coalition to End Human Trafficking;
• Janet Childs, Director of Education, Training, and Critical Incident Stress Management for the Centre for Living with Dying at Bill Wilson Center;
• Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Meyer;
• Sherril Johnson of the YWCA Silicon Valley’s Domestic Violence Department;
• Bree Van Ness, senior advocate with the YWCA Silicon Valley’s Rape Crisis Department;
• Cindy Luu, Legal Advocate at Asian Women’s Home, the domestic violence program of Asian Americans for Community Involvement;
• Morgan Hill Police Department Detective Mindy Zen; and
• Pastor Paul J. Bains, Founder & Director of the Peninsula Chaplaincy Network and veteran police chaplain.   Invitation   Program   ###

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