LA-LAH 'State of Cities' takes on 'Rose-y' appeal

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Julie Rose, center, 2019 Walter and Marie Singer Award winner, is flanked by, from left, Crystal Yu of Rep. Anna Eshoo’s office, State Sen. Jerry Hill, Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian and Assemblyman Marc Berman.

For 20 years as president of the Los Altos Chamber of Commerce, Julie Rose honored local business leaders who showed exemplary community service with the annual Walter and Marie Singer Business Volunteer Award.

This year, the now-former Chamber president became one of those honorees.

“I can’t believe I’m going to be part of that group,” Rose said at the June 7 Chamber-sponsored “Perspective 2019” event at Fremont Hills Country Club in Los Altos Hills. In addition to “State of the Cities” speeches from the mayors of Los Altos and Los Altos Hills, the presentation of the Singer award is a staple of the gathering.

Named after beloved downtown business owners Walter and Marie Singer, the award has been given since 1993 to those exhibiting community service, generosity and commitment to business.

Rose, who headed the Chamber from 1996 to her retirement in 2017, also has been a committed volunteer with service to the Rotary Club of Los Altos and the Los Altos History Museum.

Abigail Ahrens, last year’s Singer Award winner, introduced Rose as a good-hearted person, dependable and always on task.

“She never let you down,” Ahrens said.

Local legislators attended the event to offer proclamations congratulating Rose, including Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian, State Sen. Jerry Hill and Assemblyman Marc Berman.

Rose and the other Singer awardees in attendance all wore red bowtie pins, reflective of Walter Singer’s signature bowtie.

Preceding Rose’s presentation were updates from Los Altos Mayor Lynette Lee Eng and Los Altos Hills Mayor Roger Spreen on the status of their respective communities.

Spreen pointed to the “good condition” of the town’s streets and restoration work on open spaces. He noted increased service hours with the Sheriff’s Office leading to a website naming the town the No. 1 safest city in the state. He also remarked on the installation of stop signs, frowned on at first by some, resulting in a sharp decrease in traffic complaints.

Lee Eng called Los Altos “admired and also envied” throughout the Bay Area. She cited work beginning on a new community center, with completion set for December 2020. She named city priorities in traffic control and public safety, and pointed to a downturn in crime. Another priority was improving the “quantity and diversity of affordable housing.”

With a nod to Hill and Berman in the audience, Lee Eng also said the city needs to be “proactive in maintaining local control” in the wake of state housing bills that threaten to usurp some of that control.

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