Santa Barbara Foundation’s 79th Person of the Year Awards Nominations Underway, Nominations Close on Friday, July 15th at 5 P.M.

Photo Caption: John Daly and Judith Staplemann were selected as the 78th People of the Year and were honored at a small celebration on October 6, 2021. Photo: (Left) Jackie Carrera, President & CEO of SBF, John Daly, and Judith Staplemann.


Considered one of the highest honors of the year in Santa Barbara County, this year’s Person of the Year Award nominations are off and running. The Santa Barbara Foundation, along with co-sponsors Montecito Bank & Trust, Noozhawk, The Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara, Cox Communications, and Montecito Journal, invites the community at large to nominate an individual, couple, or family whose volunteer service represents a meaningful commitment to the community; addresses a real community needs or enhances the quality of life in the Santa Barbara area; or has involved acts of generosity, kindness, or innovation, with an emphasis on the recent accomplishments and achievements.

“During this time of unrest and uncertainty due to COVID and other concerns based on inflation, societal unrest, and global turmoil, it is such an honor to be able to focus on the positive philanthropic achievements of those in our Santa Barbara area—many who have been quietly doing this work for decades,” said Jordan Killebrew, Communications Director, Santa Barbara Foundation.

“While we particularly recognize the winners of the Person of the Year Awards, we also wish to acknowledge the many outstanding unsung heroes who volunteer their time, energy, and financial support to ensure that noteworthy causes in our communities are sustained and thriving,” added Killebrew.

For 79-years, the annual Person of the Year Awards (formerly Man & Woman of the Year) has shined a light on those who have gone above and beyond for Santa Barbara communities as role models and ambassadors for their causes. The Santa Barbara Foundation believes that these individuals serve as an inspiration to others, including a new generation of volunteers.

The Santa Barbara Foundation would also like to emphasize that the award selection process is comprehensive and thorough. After all nominations are received on Friday, July 15, there will be a deliberation period of all applications by a Pre-Selection Committee known as the Collaboration for Social Impact Advisory Board (consisting of nonprofit leaders in Santa Barbara County). The committee will then provide their top preferences to the Selection Committee comprised of former recipients of the Person of the Year Award who will determine the next recipients of the award. Last year the Santa Barbara Foundation, along with co-sponsors, Montecito Bank & Trust, Noozhawk, The Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara, Merryl Brown Events, and Bryant & Sons, LTD. honored John Daly and Judy Stapelmann. These individuals are exceptional members of our community and have contributed to the betterment of the Santa Barbara area.

“Volunteering is a gift when I can see the changes (it enables),” said John Daly upon receiving his award. “It’s opened up my entire world.”

Judy Stapelmann added, when addressing what motivates her volunteerism, “I try to be an example and to work on the causes I believe in.”

Additional past honorees include Jelinda DeVorzon, David Boyd, Catherine Remak, Tom Parker, Michael & Marni Cooney, Ernesto Paredes, Joni Meisel, Janet Garufis, Jon Clark, and so many more amazing Santa Barbara area community members. (See entire recipient list below)

The 79th Person of the Year Luncheon will be held on September 21, with the location to be announced soon. For more information about the nomination process, please visit

Former Recipients include:

George Adams | Sue Adams | David Anderson | Donald Anderson | Richard Arbagey | Stanley Bartlett | Russell Bell | Ed Birch | George Bliss | Patricia Dillon Bliss | David Boyd | Cally Brennand | Ardis Sloan Bryant | Bob Bryant |Hildahl Burtness | Gertrude Calden | George Castagnola | Harold Chase | Bill Cirone | Pearl Chase | Carnzu A. Clark | Pierre Claeyssens | Jon Clark | Michael & Marni Cooney | Ida Cordero | Virgil Cordano | Larry Crandell | John Daly | Emily Davis | Louise Lowry Davis | Jelinda DeVorzon | Carol Doane | Lura Dolas | Patricia Caldwell Dow |Wallace Drew | Warner Edmonds | Robert J. Emmons | Nancyann Failing | Léni Fé Bland | Carolyn E. Ferguson | Julia Forbes | Gil Garcia | Janet Garufis | Etta Glahn | Jeanne Graffy | Katherine Meeker Gray | Sylvia Griffiths | Betty M. Groebli | Susan Miles Gulbransen | Jane Habermann | Jerry Harwin | Vicki Hazard | Stephen M. Hicks | Lorraine Hoelscher | James Hurley, Jr. | Shirley Ann Hurley | Reuben Irvin | Palmer Jackson | Arnold Jacquemain | Penny Jenkins | Yvonne Jordan | Gerd Jordano | Robert Kallman | H.O. Koefod | Leonard Kummer | Cliff Lambert | Louis Lancaster | Winnie Lancaster | Lotte Lehmann | Michael Lemus | Grace Meeker Lloyd | Stanley Lowry | Eli Luria | Steve Lyons | Duncan MacDougall | Peter MacDougall | Patricia MacFarlane | Anita Mackey | Patrick Maher | Sidney McFarland | Ralph McNall | Lucy McReynolds | David Medina | Joni Meisel | Mary Jo Miles | Courtney Monsen | Dwight Murphy | Vie Obern | Bruce O’Neal | Carol Palladini | Charles Panoyan | Ernesto Paredes | Tom Parker | John Parma

| Helen Pedotti | Deborah Pelissero | David L. Peri | Mary Perry | Donald Phillips | R Mildred Pinheiro | Richard Polsky | Sheridah Porter | Francis Price, Sr. | John S. Rathbone | Joanne Rapp | Catherine Remak | John Rickard | Leslie Ridley-Tree | Edgar Robinson | Marshall Rose | Betty Rosness | Alice Rypins | Clark Sargeant | Ken Saxon | Maryan Schall | Alice Schott | Jean Schuyler | Jan Severson | David Shiffman | Elmer Shirrell | David Siebert | Annette Slavin | Clifford W. Sponsel | Sid Smith | Mary Standlee | Judy Stapelmann | Charles Stearns | Charles A. Storke | Thomas M. Storke | Barbara Tellefson | John Timmons | Anne Smith Towbes | Gail Towbes | Michael Towbes | James Van Etta | Selmer O. Wake | Milton Weinstein | Donald Welch | Edwin Welch | Richard Welch | Ada Schick Wing | L. Stuart Wing | Eleanor Wright |

About Santa Barbara Foundation

The Santa Barbara Foundation, the largest community foundation in the region and the county’s go-to resource for investment and capacity-building, strives to ensure that all residents can thrive. Nearly every Santa Barbara County nonprofit organization and essential community project has been supported by the Foundation during its 94-year history.

The Foundation is working to improve areas that affect quality of life in Santa Barbara County, including support for basic needs, and addressing the concerns of the working family, including child care, workforce development, and workforce housing. The Foundation connects those who give with those in need – and all 3 who dream of stronger communities. To learn more, please visit and SBF COVID-19 Impact Report to learn more about our work during the pandemic. Learn more at

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