Alan Vlacich, about as modest as they come, never expected to be honored for what comes naturally – volunteering for an organization that transforms the lives of children.
Yet, on Sunday, Sept. 30, Vlacich will be recognized at one of South Pasadena’s most prestigious events when he will receive the Community Service Award from the Professional Child Development Associates (PCDA) at the annual Harvest Moon Magic: Gala and Art Auction. Therese and Mario Molina will host the lavish evening affair at their beautiful Chelten Way home.
“Not sure, I guess they like what I do,” said a humble Vlacich, when asked why he was selected by PCDA to receive the key award. “It really means a lot to me. I’m so very honored to be associated with such a great organization.”
Admittedly, he was surprised in being tabbed by PCDA to earn the award because volunteering has become a way of life for so long for Vlacich, his wife, Lin, and his circle of friends.
“It’s what I do,” said Vlacich, who has served as a PCDA board member for 10 years. His unwavering philanthropy hardly stops there. Civic engagement is a daily practice for the man who has donated hundreds of hours over the years to local causes and organizations. Whether it’s the South Pasadena Kiwanis Club, Oneonta Club or South Pasadena Tournament of Roses, it seems that Vlacich’s heart is always in the right place.
“Being raised in South Pasadena, it just seems natural to make our city and community better by volunteering,” said the longtime insurance agent with Shaw, Moses, Mendenhall and Associates who enjoys beekeeping, fly fishing, cycling, coffee roasting, and spending time with family and friends when away from the office.
Vlacich has been giving back to PCDA, an organization with a mission to help children with autism and other developmental challenges, by doing some fundraising and board development.
He will be honored along with Dr. Joshua Feder, who will receive the Greenspan Humanitarian Award, and Joshua Ray Cabrera, recipient of the PCDA Achievement Award. Dr. Feder is a child and family psychiatrist in Solano Beach who addresses neuropsychiatric challenges in children and adults. Cabrera has benefited greatly through PCDA services, initially participating in the organization’s Social-Emotional Development Intervention Floortime program after being diagnosed with autism at age 5.
It’s because of renowned doctors like Feder and outstanding teens like Cabrera that make individuals like Vlacich want to keep giving back. “PCDA has had great success in helping kids,” he insisted.
And volunteers might not come any better than Alan Vlacich, who, in his mind, is just one of many in the city.
“That’s what makes South Pasadena so great,” he said. Humbly, of course.