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Stater Bros. Charities honored five individuals with awards in recognition of their extraordinary commitment to improving the quality of life in the communities they serve. The awards were presented earlier this spring at the 8th Annual Stater Bros. Charities Dave Stockton Heroes Challenge at the Mission Inn Hotel & Spa in Riverside, Calif.
Neale and Patricia Perkins were recipients of the prestigious Captain Leland F. Norton Award in honor of their exemplary service to their country and community. Neale Perkins is founder of Safariland, a worldwide manufacturer and distributor of law enforcement equipment and car accessories. Thousands of lives have been saved by Safariland’s state-of-the-art security holsters. Residents of Lake Arrowhead, Calif., Neale and Patricia founded the Mountain Communities Scholarship Society (MCSS), which raises money toward Cal State San Bernardino scholarships for mountain community residents. To date, 220 scholarships have been awarded.
Michael McCue received the Hero of the Heartland Award for his tireless efforts in providing emotional and physical support to deployed soldiers. McCue founded Operation: Glove, a non-profit organization that collects new and gently used baseball gloves and baseballs to send to deployed men and women stationed around the world. The mission of Operation: Glove aims to reduce the onset of homesickness and depression, and save lives by using the game of baseball.
Patricia Nickols-Butler also received the Hero of the Heartland Award for improving the quality of life of those in her community. Having served as CEO of Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County (CAPSBC) since 1992, Nickols-Butler has a passion for serving the low-income community, and under her leadership the first count of San Bernardino County’s homeless population was accomplished. She also successfully competed for and received more than $40 million dollars in U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Homeless funding for more than 50 non-profit programs in San Bernardino County.
Chad Pfeifer, meanwhile, received the Chairman’s Trophy, which is presented to an individual who has “done the right thing, for the right reason,” through self-sacrifice and perseverance and in doing so has been an inspiration to others. Shortly after college, Pfeifer joined the United States Army as an infantry paratrooper and was deployed to Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom in October of 2006. In April of 2007, Pfeifer’s patrol vehicle was hit with an improvised explosive device resulting in the amputation of his left leg above his knee. While undergoing rehabilitation and physical therapy to adapt to walking with a prosthetic leg, Pfeifer picked up the game of golf as a form of therapy and fell in love with it. Pfeifer uses his personal story and the game of golf to help other wounded soldiers overcome adversity and continue to live their lives to the fullest.
Stater Bros. Charities made significant donations in honor of each individual to the following nonprofit organizations:
• $25,000 to Mountain Communities Scholarship Fund ~ in honor of Neale & Patricia Perkins
• $10,000 to Operation: GLove ~ in honor of Michael McCue
• $10,000 to The Anthony J. Nickols, Jr. Foundation ~ in honor of Patricia Nickols-Butler
• $10,000 to Troops First Foundation ~ in honor of Chad Pfeifer
With 168 supermarkets, Yucaipa, Calif.-based Stater Bros. is the largest privately owned supermarket chain in Southern California and the largest private employer in both San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.
Since 2008, Stater Bros. and Stater Bros. Charities have contributed more than $75 million in food and funds to local Southern California communities.