Honoring Their Service

by Robert Larios, CEO, The Club

Robert Larios

Alive! has never published a cover story like the one
this month. That is because we have never lost three people so important to Club Members in the matter of just a few months.

Phil, Americo and Jim: I knew each of them on a first-name basis. They contributed mightily to the lives of Club Members, the City, the state, and our country, as you will read in this month’s feature. Their work affected our world, both very locally here in LA and in the whole United States: Phil Orland retired from a long career at Rec and Parks and served on the Club Board and the board of our friends at the RLACEI; Americo Garza helped blaze trails by organizing Hispanics for better career representation throughout the country … and Jim Thompson, a Club employee, made our association function beautifully from the ground up so we can serve our Members in the best way we know how.

These three remarkable people had at least one thing in common: their commitment to others. Their work mattered. Their dedication mattered. The sadness that comes from their passing gives the Club a chance to celebrate them, honor them and recognize their significant contributions. We pledge our deep gratitude for their nearly hundred years of combined service; that is one of the most important things the Club can do for its Members.

I send my deepest condolences to Penny Orland, to our own Leigh Thompson, and to the family of Americo Garza. Your loved ones are our heroes.

So Long to a Servant: I wish Brian Sibert, Refuse Collection Truck Operator, Public Works/Sanitation, a beautiful retirement after 34 years of City service. We featured Brian on our cover several years ago for the program he managed – collecting gifts at the West Valley Yard for underprivileged children at Christmas. I mean, by the thousands and thousands, over the years. Brian is an incredible servant to the world, and we wish him the best.

Plaques With Gratitude: Speaking of honoring Club Members, I want readers to know about the expansion of what we call “Larios in the City.” Our program to award retirement plaques to Club Members of at least five years of consecutive Membership is growing by popular demand! We decided to put a program in place to better manage this expanding outreach. Let us recognize your dedicated service and thank you for all you’ve done. Go to the online Retirement Plaque Request form.

Lock In Those Rates: Please register for one of the Club’s Long-Term Care seminars, hosted by our Noelle Kauffman (go to Ready Retirement for more information). Lock in those rates before the end of the year!

¡Gracias por leer!



Correction: In last month’s blog entry from Club CEO Robert Larios, he included a tribute to a former teacher. In the introduction to that remembrance, we misstated the name of the teacher. He was Sherman W. Johnson. Alive! apologizes to Mr. Johnson’s family and former students, and to Robert Larios.