With the Equipment Show and first-rate training classes coming to a conclusion Thursday, all the attendees of the 49th conference were setting their sites on the final event. The gala dinner/dance allowed members from throughout California and Arizona to dress for the occasion. With a “Miner” theme, cowboy boots & hats, jeans and bandanas were a common site.
Despite all the revelry, the dinner plays host to one of the most important announcements of the entire Conference. The Peter Walsh Award is presented. The winner was announced following a delicious meal.
With four very qualified and deserving candidates anxiously awaiting the envelope to be opened, Tsutomu Imamura, the 2016 winner, spoke about each nominee’s attributes. As is his style, Tsutomu keep his introduction of each gentleman brief. With the opening of the envelope a silence fell over the large group. “And the winner,” Tsutomu began, “is Carl Valdez.”
Upon hearing his name, Carl, the fortieth winner, gave his wife a hug and kiss and proudly came forward to accept the Maintenance Superintendents Association’s highest honor. “I didn’t prepare a speech”, Carl said. “I don’t think that anyone who is nominated for this award expects to win, but I am honored to accept the Peter Walsh Award.”
Once Carl finished thanking his wife for her support and patience, being married to a guy who is constantly on the go and involved in a number of endeavors. He also thanked the members of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter for the nomination and support since he moved to the area when he was hire by the City of Fremont. Carl took the time to thank his friends and mentors from the Greater Ventura Area Chapter who got him involved in the MSA and showed confidence in him. He concluded his comments with high praise for his fellow nominees.
Following an enthusiastic round of applause, all past Peter Walsh Award winners who attended were ask to come forward to welcome the latest member of the exclusive group. Each past honoree took a moment to offer their praise to Carl for his dedication and involvement with the MSA. Once a few pictures were taken, Carl was approached by members of his crews from the City of Fremont and many of the “49ers” that wanted to offer their congratulations.
The entire Maintenance Superintendents Association is proud to honor Carl with the 2017 Peter Walsh Award!