Honoree: Joseph Svehla
Honored by: Pacific Symphony
Cause Area: Arts
Pacific Symphony is privileged to nominate Joseph Svehla for the 2016 Spirit of Volunteerism Award. Joe is a 20-year season subscriber and 15-year volunteer for Pacific Symphony, who currently serves as President of the Pacific Symphony League, the volunteer service organization with 220 loyal members. As President, Joe represents the League on the Symphony’s Board of Directors, and Joe was recently elected as a member of the Board of Counselors, a devoted group of active donors.
In addition to acting as League President, Joe heads all of the education program volunteer efforts, including management and coordination of all League members. For the past five years, he has volunteered for every Class Act Youth Concert, which take place every year through 6 to 8 presentations for over 15,000 students in Orange County. Over the years, he has been an active volunteer for the five annual Saturday Family Musical Morning concerts and the summertime Symphony in the Cities concerts in Irvine, Mission Viejo, Lake Forest and Costa Mesa. He has been the lead volunteer for the Symphony’s booth at the Festival of Children at South Coast Plaza for the past three years, and served as Class Act Ambassador for Los Alamitos Elementary School for the past four years. In recognition of his extraordinary volunteer service, Joe was awarded the 2011-12 Hats Off! Award from Pacific Symphony.
In his role as President, Joe oversees, plans, and coordinates the activities of the Pacific Symphony League, which includes a range of member events such as luncheons, a Sunday Salon Series and Opera Focus gatherings. Moreover, the League is responsible for the Symphony Shop at the Renée and Henry Concert Hall. It takes a highly motivated, diplomatic and sensitive leader to carry out all of the responsibilities of President, and his leadership has been exemplary, visionary and steadfast. His unparalleled commitment to excellence is an inspiration to the entire volunteer corps, as well as to the staff and board of directors. Joe is truly one-of-a-kind, and Pacific Symphony values his exceptional talents, generous time, unwavering dedication and trusted counsel.
In 2014, Joe took part in OneOC’s Service Enterprise Training Series which is transforming Pacific Symphony’s volunteer program, and for which Joe is helping and leading efforts to implement new policies and procedures. Joe has been instrumental in new volunteer management and recruitment, and has aided in the search and hiring of a brand new Volunteer Manager position, who begins in mid-January 2016.
Prior to devoting himself to Pacific Symphony, he was a volunteer for KCET Public Television and Classical KUSC Radio.
The Pacific Symphony League and the Board of Counselors feel very fortunate to have Joe as a leader, and Pacific Symphony could not ask for a more devoted and dedicated volunteer.