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July 22, 2009 > Chamber of Commerce honors Best Green Business

Chamber of Commerce honors Best Green Business

By Ritu Jha
Photos By by Ritu Jha

It seemed like "Ladies' Day" on Wednesday, July 15 at the annual Community Spirit Awards Ceremony hosted by the Union City Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber seeks to recognize contributions to business, education, government and the environment.

Three women were honored - Pat Gacoscos, Donna Lindsay and Christine Friday - for their hard work and contributions to the community. Colin Shutes, Facilities Manager, Southern Wine & Spirits, could not attend the ceremony to accept the Business Award in person.

The occasion, held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, was celebrated by City officials, Mayor Mark Green, Council members and many other guests.

This year the Chamber introduced a new award for the "Best Green Business." Pat Gacoscos, a Union Sanitary District (USD) board member, accepted the award on behalf of the independent special district which is based in Union City and serves the Tri Cities.

"I'm really happy. USD has received national recognition but this award is important because the company is local and works for local residents. We collect wastewater from Fremont, Union City and Newark and recycle it," said Gacoscos.

The company has various projects that deal with environmental protection, green natural gas and bio-fuel.

"We try to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the environment," said Gacoscos.

The City of Union City is forming a Climate Protection Task Force whose members are drawn from businesses, Union Sanitary District, City staff and community members interested in protecting the climate. "Our organization, USD also has recently formed its own task force called Lean Green Task Force," added Gacoscos.

Donna Lindsay, a 64-year old retired teacher, said she was informed of her nomination for the Education Award a month ago. Lindsay has been in the teaching profession all her life. She taught elementary to Grade 5 for 41 years and now teaches ESL (English as a Second Language) at New Haven Adult School. "I am honored and privileged," said Lindsay. "I feel very grateful. Teaching is my passion. I would like to continue teaching part-time."

Christine Friday, Union City's Economic Development Coordinator was very excited to be recognized by the Chamber for her contribution to government. Friday has been with the City for the past five years and is concerned about the closure of the San Francisco Chronicle printing press. She has been working on various projects and welcomes businesses to Union City. "There were more than 400 jobs lost. We must work to remedy that," said Friday. "We want to create more jobs and invite venture capital companies. We want quality jobs in Union City."

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