Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, recently entered a statement into the congressional record honoring Trent Yaconelli, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Helena and Calistoga.
Thompson’s statement, entered into the congressional record on Dec. 14, praises Yaconelli’s “strong integrity and leadership through his dedication to public service.”
With the COVID-19 pandemic and a series of wildfires affecting many local families, the club has responded by expanding its services. The club has provided meals, lodging, financial support, and in a few cases even cars to families who lost their own in the wildfires.
“It is important that we stay relevant in these trying times,” Yaconelli, who lost his own home in the 2017 Tubbs Fire, told the Star in November. “Our job is to serve our community especially the families and kids that need us the most. We will continue to do that with new programs and partnerships in any way that we can. As we head into an extremely active time for the virus the Clubs will work diligently to help our Club families while keeping our community safe. If we all work together we can do great things.”
Educated at Sonoma State University and the University of Texas, “Yaconelli has used his education to aid his community through times of hardship, serving as the Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club since 2017,” the statement reads. “Before serving as Executive Director, Mr. Yaconelli had served on the Club’s staff for more than 20 years and as Associate Executive Director for four and half years.
“Drawing on his years of community service, Mr. Yaconelli has shown an immense capacity to exercise moral leadership and empathy through natural disasters and on-going adversity. He worked with the Club staff to deliver more than 25,000 meals to the community, day-to-day, during the devastating Glass Fire. Recognizing that many of the people who were affected by the fire had lost their homes and were ineligible to receive disaster relief funds, Mr. Yaconelli worked with the Club to distribute more than $70,000 in direct gifts to fifteen club families. Particularly, he helped distribute three cars to families that lost their vehicles in the fire, along with an additional $15,000 in individual grants to help them get back on their feet.
“Trent Yaconelli’s tireless work over these past fourteen years should not go unnoticed.
The support that he has given to the families and children of Calistoga and St. Helena has undoubtedly improved the livelihood of his community. In this spirit, Mr. Yaconelli is currently serving the students of the St. Helena Unified School District while they are participating in distance learning. His encompassing knowledge of his community continues to serve the youth and the families that need him the most.”
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HEART OF THE VALLEY: MEET OUTSTANDING MEMBERS OF THE NAPA COUNTY COMMUNITY
Heart of the Valley: Meet outstanding members of the Napa County community
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