Recognizing community service

Mary Solari established the Community Service Award with Peggy Downes Baskin. (Photo: r.r. jones)

To Mary Solari, it's important to help students who really need it and can advance in their careers "with a little bit of help."

"It's very gratifying," said Solari, whose late husband, Richard Solari, was president, CEO, and chairman of Granite Construction Co. of Watsonville. "One of the nicest things you can do for an individual is help with their education."

Solari and fellow UCSC patron Peggy Downes Baskin, a former professor of politics at Santa Clara University and a lecturer and research associate in feminist studies at UCSC, established the award in 2001 with a $10,000 pledge.

The awards are presented each year to graduating feminist studies seniors to recognize outstanding community service.

For information about the Community Service Award, or to contribute to the Humanities Division, contact Liz Sandoval at (831) 459-4713 or