Pianist provides a glimpse into the world of Latin music

JAVIER B. PACHECO

“The world of Latin music offers a glimpse into the melodies, rhythms, harmonies and texts of the Americas. The challenge of Orquesta Pacheco is presenting this great diversity in original and creative formats.”

Occupation: Music, piano and Spanish teacher; arranger

Home: Menlo Park

Achievement: The pianist and scholar — he has a doctorate in ethnomusicology — peforms with several bands; Orquesa Pacheco, in the lineup of the Redwood City Salsa Festival on Sept. 20, is among them.

KEVIN WESTLYE

“Each year we evolve the Food Affaire with new theme, format and location to keep the event fresh for the public and exciting from a creative standpoint for the chefs.”

Occupation: Executive director, Golden Gate Restaurant Association

Home: Lafayette

Achievement: The executive coordinates the Food Affaire, an annual scholarship fund-raiser that has awarded $400,000 to culinary students. This year’s gala, which showcases Bay Area chefs, is Sept. 22 at Ruby Skye.

LYNDA TASCHEK

“I reached out to FAAN to understand more about my daughter Hannah’s life-threatening multiple food allergies only to realize that so many others living with food allergies need this event.”

Occupation: Co-chair, FAAN Walk for Food Allergy in San Francisco

Home: San Francisco

Achievement: The volunteer is chairing The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network's Walk for Food Allergy, a fundraiser to increase awareness about food allergy and raise money for research and education. The walk starts in Golden Gate Park Sept. 20.

NIKHIL ARORA

“It's exciting to work to solve a complex, deep-rooted problem with modern, simple solutions. The power of light to transform rural homes cannot be overlooked.”

Occupation: Student

Home: Irvine

Achievement: The UC Berkeley student’s project “Solar Powered Africa-LED Lanterns Lighting the Way” is a semi-finalist in an American Express $2.5 million online initiative that invites card members to vote for projects that have a positive impact on the world.

CARLOS FIGUEROA

“I didn’t really know what it was when I entered. My overall thoughts on winning are— I was overwhelmed, shocked, and didn’t really expect anything like that to happen.”

Occupation: “Accidental model”

Home: San Francisco

Achievement: Undergear and Instinct Magazine recently named the well-built guy the winner of the local round of its national male model search. He will compete for an Undergear contract and Instinct Magazine cover shoot in New York City on Oct. 10.</p>

Half a century of Shawl-Anderson Dance Center

Dancers have career lifespans similar to butterflies — very, very short.

Against that fact of life, consider the 50 years of Oakland's nonprofit Shawl-Anderson Dance Center.Frank Shawl and Victor Anderson came from dance careers in New York in 1958, and the dance center they set up then has served as home to thousands in the community, producing some big names in the Bay Area and on the national dance scene.

Dancers from around the country are expected at the 50th anniversary gala benefit on Sept. 20 in St. John's Presbyterian Church, 2727 College Ave., Berkeley, beginning at 5 p.m. Tickets are  $75 to $125.

The day before, on Sept. 19, there will be performances at the center, at 2704 Alcatraz Ave. at College Avenue, in Berkeley, at 7 and 9 p.m.  Tickets are $15.

For information and tickets, call (510) 654-5921 or visit www.shawl-anderson.org.

Sequoia Hospital joins recycling program to improve health care

Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City is participating in a recycling program sponsored by MedShare International, which is dedicated to bridging the gap between a local surplus of medical supplies and the need for improved health care around the world.

Opened but unused medical supplies are among the the waste routinely discarded by hospitals; MedShare redistributes the material to developing countries that have little or no medical supplies.

Supplies including sutures, tapes, gloves and custom pack- items— no drugs — are being collected at Sequoia; MedShare picks them up weekly and brings them to a location in the East Bay staffed by some 500 volunteers for sorting and redistribution.

For more information about the program, visit www.medshare.org.

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