Recipients of the monthly North Bay Spirit Awards 2020

The North Bay Spirit award was developed in partnership with The Press Democrat and Comcast NBCU to celebrate people who make a difference in our communities. In addition to highlighting remarkable individuals, the North Bay Spirit program aims to encourage volunteerism, raise visibility of nonprofits and create a spirit of giving. You will find stories and videos about the recipients below.

Previous Recipients: 2019

January: Keri Vellis - foster mother, nonprofit leader, children’s advocate

Foster parent for 20 children over the last seven years

As a foster parent, Keri Vellis has wanted nothing more than to comfort them. She provided a loving home and safe place for kids who didn’t have those things. With her husband Ted, she adopted three foster children. But Vellis felt she could do more. More here.


February: Kelley Holly - Animal advocate, equestrian

The longtime equestrian cares for and trains abused and neglected horses

Kelley Holly has spent the past 40 years training young people in the sport of horse vaulting. She created a nonprofit organization to share her love of the sport, and rehabilitates abused and neglected horses. More here.


March: Kaarin Lee - F.I.S.H. food pantry director, volunteer

The volunteer F.I.S.H. food pantry executive director is determined to ensure people have enough food

Kaarin Lee has dedicated her time and effort to running the F.I.S.H. Food Pantry in Santa Rosa and recently coordinated the pantry's move to a larger location. More here.


April: Bruce Mentzer - Farm to Fight Hunger founder

Healdsburg resident Bruce Mentzer and his partner, Anthony Solar, grow vegetables and raise chickens to feed the hungry

Bruce Mentzer gives all of the produce and eggs he produces on his Healdsburg farm to local nonprofits, including the Redwood Empire Food Bank. More here.


May: Duane Ledward - Dogma Animal Rescue founder

Duane Ledward rescues dogs who are pregnant, have broken bones or birth defects

Since Duane Ledward founded the Sebastopol animal rescue, he's found homes for more than 1,000 abused or neglected dogs. More here.


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