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Community briefs: Gary Riekes wins Jefferson Award

 

Gary Riekes, founder of the Riekes Center for Human Enhancement in North Fair Oaks, is a winner of a regional Jefferson Award for Public Service.

Mr. Riekes started the center in 1974 to offer students fitness, creative arts, nature awareness and other services that help them develop skills, self-reliance and self-esteem.

The services are provided regardless of the student's ability to pay or perform, the organization says. Thirty percent of students receive scholarships.

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New director

Jennifer Thompson, who has 20 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations, is the new executive director of Sustainable Silicon Valley.

A former executive producer for the Lucile Packard Foundation's Fellowship Program for Science and Engineering, she has worked for six years as associate director of Sustainable Silicon Valley with outgoing executive director Marianna Grossman.

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'Miles for Smiles'

Menlo Park dentist Jan Gabus raised more than $15,000 from his ride last year in the Des Moines Register newspaper's annual "Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa." The seven-day ride winds through small towns and cornfields for 468 miles from Sioux City to Davenport.

"I did this ride in 1994, 1995, 2011 and this year. I'm originally from Nebraska and it's a nostalgic return to my Midwestern roots," he said.

During the past eight years, he has raised more than $92,000 for the Mid-Peninsula Dental Health Foundation, which provides dental care for the working poor who do not have dental insurance or government assistance.

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Library news

A project to expand the book-sorting room in the Menlo Park Library, expected to increase book-sorting efficiency by 30 percent, is due to start the second week of February and last 14 days. The library also announced it has a collection of the Sunset magazine archives.

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