SAN DIEGO - The San Diego Padres will honor the recipient of the final Hispanic Heritage Comunidad Award for 2015 in a pregame ceremony prior to tonight's 7:10 p.m. game vs. the Atlanta Braves. Edwin Garrette, a San Diego Police Department Officer, has been selected as the recipient of the award by members of the Padres' Hispanic Community Advisory Council (HCAC).
Officer Garrette was selected to receive the award in the area of SERVE (Military/First Responders) for his work with the STAR/PAL organization, which allows inner-city youth, including many of Hispanic and Latino descent, the opportunity to have positive interactions with local law enforcement. Over seven years with STAR/PAL, Officer Garrette has organized hundreds of youth camps held at local schools, including San Diego Chargers Play 60 Camps and San Diego Padres Youth Baseball camps that encourage healthy living and provides interaction with law enforcement officers in a fun and safe environment.
In addition to his dedication to STAR/PAL, Officer Garrette is heavily involved with InterACTion, a program in collaboration with the La Jolla Playhouse and Lincoln High School. InterACTion encourages the use of theater arts to discuss sensitive subjects faced by inner city youth, such as teen violence, sexual assault and cyber bullying. By using theater as an outlet, students are able to creatively express their thoughts and have open dialogue about the daily challenges they face. After taking part in the InterACTion program, many students have gone on to enter the San Diego Police Department Cadet program, which Garrette points to as evidence of the effectiveness of the program.
The Padres' Hispanic Heritage Comunidad Award series was established in 2012 to recognize and pay tribute to individuals or organizations whose work makes a positive impact on those who live and work in San Diego and Baja California's Hispanic community. In support of the Padres Foundation's community vision, four awards have been given throughout the year, one each in the areas of children's health (LIVE), children's education (LEARN), youth baseball/ softball or youth fitness (PLAY) and supporting our law enforcement and military communities (SERVE). For the first time in the program's history, each winner in 2015 will receive $1,000 from the Padres Foundation to be donated to the charity of their choice.
All Hispanic Heritage Comunidad Award winners will be honored together on the field before the Padres game on Friday, Sept. 25, 2015, as part of a Hispanic Heritage Month celebration.