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Councilmember Marti Emerald, Former City Manager Jack McGrory, honoree Tony Young and SDSU President Elliot Hirshman at the event. Councilmember Marti Emerald, Former City Manager Jack McGrory, honoree Tony Young and SDSU President Elliot Hirshman at the event.

Service Award Presented to Red Cross CEO

Tony Young receives the President’s Service Award from SDSU.
By Natalia Van Stralen

For his work in the community, former San Diego City Council President Tony Young was honored today with the President’s Service Award.

Young, now Chief Executive Officer of American Red Cross San Diego-Imperial Counties chapter, was recognized for his outstanding contributions to public service.

The event was hosted by San Diego State University President Elliot Hirshman at the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center.

About Tony Young

In 2005, Young was elected to represent San Diego's fourth council district. In 2010, Young was unanimously elected by his colleagues to serve as San Diego City Council president. At the beginning of 2013, he officially became the CEO of the San Diego-Imperial Counties chapter of the American Red Cross.

Accepting his award, Young said, “I've been a schoolteacher, a counselor and a councilmember. These roles are the same – it's about helping people and serving people.”

Distinguished speakers and guests

Former City Manager Jack McGrory, a member of The Campanile Foundation Board of Directors and chair of its government and community relations committee, spoke about how Young’s presence in city council and the Red Cross has made San Diego a better place. McGrory is also a past recipient of the President’s Service Award.

Hirshman and Councilmember Marti Emerald spoke to the challenges that Young has faced in his leadership roles and his ability to overcome them.

“You served with grace, dignity and through hard times, and you stepped up and turned challenges into opportunities,” Emerald said.

Emerald also announced the Proclamation of the City Council that Feb. 28, 2013 shall be “Tony Young Day.”

Among the distinguished guests were City Council President Todd Gloria, Councilmember Mark Kersey, former Councilmember Carl DeMaio; past award winner and former City Councilmember and Supervisor Leon Williams; Red Cross board members and staff as well as former red Cross CEO Joe Carver.

Also in attendance were Young’s mother, Jeanne Young, and sister, Ami Young-Hill.

About the award

First presented in 2001, the President’s Service Award is given to individuals who are dedicated to community service and are promoters of higher education. Past honorees have included Mayor Bob Filner, former Mayor Jerry Sanders and former State Senator Christine Kehoe.