Watch the Full Episode of 'Local Heroes Celebration 2013'

Local Heroes Celebration 2013, hosted by actress Tempestt Bledsoe, was a celebration of the extraordinary contributions of 12 outstanding community leaders, with exciting performances by New Directions Choir, Taiko Center of Los Angeles, and Grammy Award-winning group Quetzal.

Taped during the live event at Club Nokia in Downtown Los Angeles in October, the 2013 honorees were:

  • Kalil Cohen: Touring educator, speaker, filmmaker, performer and founder of the Los Angeles Transgender Film Festival.
  • Thomas T. Carpenter, Esq.: Co-chair of the Forum on the Military Chaplaincy. Instrumental in helping repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," he served from 1970 to 1976 in the U.S. Marine Corps and continued in the Marine Reserves until 1982.
  • Madame Sosei Matsumoto: Renowned Japanese Tea Ceremony (chado) Master.
  • Nobuko Miyamoto: Artistic Director and Founder of Great Leap, a multicultural arts organization that uses art as performance and creative practice to deepen relations among diverse cultures and faiths.
  • Dr. Richard Allen Williams: Founder of the non-profit organization, Minority Health Institute, Inc. Angeles Echols-Brown: Founder of non-profit organization, Education Young Minds.
  • Janice Kamenir-Reznik: Co-Founder and president of the nonprofit, Jewish World Watch (JWW).
  • Harry Corre: A patient advocate at the VA West Los Angeles Medical Center and a veteran service officer of the nonprofit organization American Ex-Prisoners of War.
  • Robert García: Founding Director and Counsel of The City Project, a non-profit legal and policy advocacy team based in Los Angeles.
  • Father Richard Estrada: Founder and President of the Board of Directors of Jovenes, Inc., a non-profit organization in Los Angeles' Boyle Heights area.
  • Gail Farber: The first female to be appointed Director of the Los Angeles County Public Works Department one of the largest public works agencies in the United States.
  • Belinda Smith Walker: A key player in the formation of Girls & Gangs (G&G), Founding Board Member of New Village Charter School, served on the board of another non-profit organization that she co-founded - the Los Angeles Women's Foundation (LAWF).