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Wayne Johnson

Forty-two years of volunteer service…It’s not just the amount of time Wayne Johnson has dedicated to the Pleasanton Community although that is impressive, it is the compassion and sincerity he puts into all his volunteer work.   His favorite part of volunteering is connecting people, helping bonds grow with one another, and creating an extended family with everyone he meets.

In 1982 Wayne started two sports leagues, basketball and softball, and soon he started many more including football and volleyball. He created camps and tournaments in many sports and has arranged countless trips for skiing, kayaking, and camping. 

He recently retired as Community Pastor at the Valley Bible Church, but he still walks people through the lines at the Food Panty and makes sure kids have food for school lunches and food-insecure community members have a meal.  Wayne has come across numerous people, homeless and dealing with substance abuse, helping them connect with services. Wayne has a special way of helping people be seen and heard, and his warm heart helps him connect with all members of our community, from the weakest to the strongest.

For nearly 10 years, he helped with volunteers for the Bothwell Thanksgiving dinners for those who needed it.  He helped Tri-Valley Senior Support by organizing volunteers with lonely seniors, maintaining their gardens, and making repairs to their homes.  He partnered with Open Heart Kitchen with volunteers to serve food on a regular basis. He also volunteered to pick up food donations from local businesses which Open Heart Kitchen used for their meals.

Wayne went with his wife Julie to San Mateo’s Memorial Park for a camping trip and came upon an amphitheater in total disrepair. They went to the ranger and asked if they could come out and rebuild it. The Ranger said, “Why would you want to do that” and Wayne said, “because we love every community”. Wayne, his wife Julie, the Ranger, and San Mateo City staff, collaborated, and found a donor for $40,000 worth of lumber.  In a single day, an army of volunteers rebuilt the amphitheater, with seating to hold over 250 people. Today, the Amphitheater is the place where Outdoor Ed and many other events are held.

When you meet Wayne, you will see why he is a deserving recipient of the Juanita Haugen Community of Character award. He embodies all the traits of honesty, self-respect, compassion, self-discipline, responsibility, and respect in everything he does.


Lynn Gatehouse

Everyone should get to know Lynn Gatehouse. Our community is a warmer community because Lynn is part of it.  Alan Hu Foundation President, Xiaofang Chen states, “I am a better person because I have the honor and privilege to work with her and learn from her.  Lynn has a heart of gold. She pours her heart into every endeavor she takes on to serve the community, in which she takes on a lot, and she always accomplishes it incredibly well. She cares deeply about her family, her friends, her students, and her community. Her Community of Character traits of responsibility, compassion, self-discipline, honesty, respect, and integrity shine through her daily actions”.

Lynn is a retired 6th grade teacher from Harvest Park Middle School, she loves all her students and loves her community.  She not only devoted her heart and soul to teaching her students, but also spent countless hours volunteering to host various school clubs and events such as the Robotics Club and the “Breakfast with an Expert” series.

Lynn joined Alan Hu Foundation Board of Directors in 2019. Board members are inspired by Lynn to contribute more to the community; her outstanding volunteer work is the driving force of Alan Hu Foundation. 

​The Alan Hu Foundation’s mission is to promote mental health, raise awareness and remove stigma surrounding psychiatric disorders, and support fundamental research for cures.  They provide scholarships to students desiring to study psychology and other disciplines involving mental health. The foundation works closely with the Pleasanton Unified School District and Pleasanton Police Department regarding mental health issues, especially in children.  Anyone interested in learning more about the organization or their mental health webinars can visit

Lynn is the volunteer publicist, organizing and executing the promotions of their events, planning months ahead with wonderfully well-written press releases on mental health.  She is a member of the Scholarship committee, choosing promising scholars for the award.  She volunteered to take a grant writing workshop to become the grant writer for the foundation, resulting in large grants to fund the foundation’s efforts to provide mental health webinars at no cost to those attending.

Lynn lives the values of the Community of Character of responsibility, compassion, self-

discipline, honesty, respect, and integrity.


Sunflower Hill


Sunflower Hill creates places and spaces where adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) live, work, learn, and thrive as part of the greater community. We co-develop affordable housing communities and offer exceptional life skills and enrichment programs.

 In September 2020, we welcomed residents to our first community, Sunflower Hill at Irby Ranch in Pleasanton. This innovative and affordable community is the first of its kind in the Tri-Valley and provides 30 independent apartment units for individuals with I/DD. Our Irby Ranch staff has developed a wide array of programs and activities that support residents and non-residents as they learn to live independently, form relationships with one another, and initiate connections in the community.

In addition to Irby Ranch, we also have a 1-acre garden at Hagemann Ranch in Livermore where we offer our hands-on garden group programs. 

As an instructional outdoor space, the Sunflower Hill Garden is a medium for educational, therapeutic, and life skills training, offering adults with I/DD opportunities to thrive. We offer our Garden Program to 10 different high school transition, adult day, and residential programs located throughout the Tri-Valley. 

In addition, the Garden produces thousands of pounds of fresh, organic produce each year. With our program participants' assistance, we donate most of our produce to local nonprofit organizations. In 2023, we donated 90%, over 2500 pounds of our produce, to Tri-Valley Haven’s Food Pantry, Shepherd’s Gate, and Culinary Angels, helping thousands of residents with food insecurity and those going through serious medical issues.  

Last year, we also began a new Community Flower Program and each week our program participants gather flowers grown in the Sunflower Hill Garden and make bouquets, which are then donated to Hope Hospice patients and Heritage Estates in Livermore. We are delighted to donate approximately 30 bouquets each week.

For more information and success stories, visit their website:

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