Four individuals, appropriately matching the criteria of the high honor, were selected as Image Award winners by South Pasadena Mayor Robert Joe and are to be honored at the Crunch Time Party hosted by the South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Committee (SPTOR).
The key honor is annually presented to individuals or organizations responsible for enhancing the image of South Pasadena beyond its borders.
Diane and Bill Cullinane, Shireen Chang and the late Paul Abbey were Joe’s choice. The mayor reflected on each person’s accomplishment during the major fundraiser for the city’s float, with an estimated price tag of $100,000 absorbed in steel and flowers before it heads for the starting line to take part in the annual Rose Parade on New Year’s Day.
“I reflected throughout the year on who would best meet the criteria of improving our image,” Joe told a sold out crowd, enjoying a social hours, dinner, and silent and live auction that traditionally brings in top dollars. “These individuals clearly meet the definition.”
Bill and Diane Cullinane
Dr. Diane Cullinane is the co-founder of Professional Child Development Associates, an organization that provides services to children and young adults with autism and other developmental challenges.
Cullinane recently retired as the organization’s executive director, a position she held for 23 years. “She is a leader in the field, traveling widely to share her knowledge and working with legislators to improve services,” said Joe.
Diane also serves on the board of Holy Family Catholic School. Among her many honors, state Assembly member Chris Holden honored Cullinane as one of his Women of Distinction earlier this year.
Bill Cullinane, a local businessman, has also enhanced the city’s image as a member of South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Committee for 10 years, serving as its president in 2012 and 2013.
During his presidency, South Pasadena’s float earned awards from the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association. He and the SPTOR received an Image Award for their efforts in 2012.
In addition, Bill is the president of the Oneonta Club’s Foundation, which awards scholarships to South Pasadena High seniors and recognizes outstanding teachers at the school. He also serves as vice president of the city’s Senior Citizens Foundation and is finance chair of the board of the St. Vincent de Paul Society of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
Recognizing Shireen Chang,, Joe said she has been a vital part of South Pasadena since 1984. She served two terms on the Library Board of Trustees, the Public Safety Commission and recently agreed an appointment to the Senior Citizen Commission.
Chang has been actively involved with the Boy Scouts, the PTA, the schools and the South Pasadena Educational Foundation.
For more than 20 years, Shireen has served on the board of the South Pasadena Chinese American Club and coordinated the organization’s annual Chinese New Year’s luncheon. “This always includes a culturally rich program of dancers and other entertainers,” explained Joe. “Due to its popularity, the event was moved from the Senior Center to this building, the War Memorial.”
Shireen is also part of the Sunday Restoration Concert Series at the South Pasadena Library Community Room, “bringing world-class music to the city,” said Joe.
If that’s not enough, she has served as a Neighborhood Watch block captain for more than 10 years and volunteered in more than 30 elections as a poll worker.
Paul Abbey, who unexpectedly passed away in September at age 66, was a longtime dedicated member of the South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Committee.
He served as the organization’s president, construction chair and in numerous other capacities in his two decades of volunteering. “As the owner of a printing company, Paul produced all of the committee’s printed materials,” said Joe.
SPTOR President Courtney Dunlap will always remember Dunlap as the committee’s “glue”
“Paul’s work enhanced the city’s image each Jan. 1 when the parade’s oldest self-built float traveled down Colorado Boulevard, including this Jan. 1,” said Joe. “The parade is seen by many millions of viewers.”
In addition to his work on the float, Abby served as a caller for South Pasadena High School Tiger Bingo, “helping to generate critically needed funds for the school,” said the mayor. “He was a member of the high school Booster Committee’s Bingo Board and served as its president for a number of years.”
Paul’s wife, Cathy Abbey, was in attendance at the Crunch Time Party to accept Image Award in Paul’s honor.