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Community Heroes

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KPBS and the National Conflict Resolution Center present Community Heroes, honoring individuals who give selflessly to build civility and community in San Diego.

Questions about the Community Heroes project? Contact Clare Pister, KPBS Community Engagement Manager, at (619) 594-2487 or

The Opioid Epidemic

The nomination period for the topic of the opioid epidemic is now over. Thank you for submitting your nominations.

Stay tuned! On June 1, 2019, the hero for the topic of the opioid epidemic will be announced and information about a community conversation on the topic will be posted here.

Veterans' Health

Marine Corps Veteran, Praised for His Efforts to Assist Wounded Warriors, Named Community Hero

Operation Rebound's senior program manager sees sports as key to injured veterans' recovery.

Gender Equity

Longtime Gender-Equity Proponent Kim Sontag-Mulder Selected As A KPBS Community Hero

Gender-equity champion credited with restarting San Diego chapter of National Organization of Women

Gun Violence Prevention

Gun Violence Prevention Activist Cornelius Bowser Recognized As A KPBS Community Hero

Bowser is co-founder of the Community Assistance Support Team.

Bowser is a community activist who seeks to make neighborhoods safer by preventing gun violence.

Civility in Politics

Imam Taha Hassane Named KPBS Community Hero For His Efforts To Address Politically Sensitive Issues

Hassane hopes that dedicated effort and energy will open up channels of communication.


Environmental Sustainability

Environmental Justice Advocate Diane Takvorian Named KPBS Community Hero

Takvorian is recognized for decades of work empowering residents in low-come areas to seek a healthy and sustainable quality of life for their neighborhoods.


Attorney Elizabeth Lopez Named KPBS Community Hero For Her Work With Asylum Seekers

The San Diego attorney is recognized for her pro bono immigration work with individuals fleeing persecution.

Affordable Housing

Video produced and edited by Roland Lizarondo.

Affordable Housing Advocate Anne Wilson Named KPBS Community Hero

The Community HousingWorks veteran sees affordable housing as a critical need in San Diego.

Racial Justice & Equality

Health Advocate Elizabeth Bustos Named KPBS Community Hero

Bustos has spent decades promoting health and justice in Southeast San Diego.

What is Community Heroes?

In January 2017, KPBS and the National Conflict Resolution Center were pleased to launch a new local initiative: Community Heroes. The goal of Community Heroes is to honor ordinary individuals who give selflessly to benefit their community and have actively made it a better place.

KPBS and NCRC seek nominations for heroes from the public based on topics, ranging from health to poverty, from inequity to the environment. Four heroes are chosen annually, with the first honored in the spring of 2017. In selecting the honorees, a committee of volunteers look for individuals who embody service and selflessness, who have shown a commitment to effectively collaborating with those around them, and who reflect the diversity of our region.

Archive of Local Heroes

Community Heroes is a continuation of a program called Local Heroes, a partnership between KPBS and Union Bank. The program ran from 1998 - 2016 and was structured around heritage months, honoring individuals who were and are making a difference in sixteen diverse communities in San Diego.

Click here to see an archive of the remarkable San Diegans who were honored as Local Heroes in the past.