Written by The Business Journal Staff
Four Valley women have been selected as the 2019 honors for the Common Threads award.
The women were selected based on their strong ag backgrounds and active service to their communities.
The winners are Kathy Briano, Tina Carreiro, Giovanna Depaoli and and Marcia Shafer.
Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims will also be the recipient of a special honorary award for public service to the ag community.
The Common Threads awards are part of a collaborative effort of the California Agricultural Leadership Foundation, the Ag One Foundation and the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology at Fresno State.
A Tulare County resident, Briano owns and operates more than 300 acres of diversified farmland including several varieties of almonds. She took over her family farm operation upon the death of her father in 1983. She actually started her career in the retail clothing industry, becoming a store manager and traveling to New York on buying trips to select seasonal fashion lines.
A Kings County resident, Carreiro helped her husband and high-school sweetheart Ben build a lucrative apartment rental and farming business. She built a career at Bank of America in Lemoore, eventually becoming an operations manager for the bank at a time few women held such roles. Carreiro is a fixture at ag events, offices and farm credit companies, delivering treats, greeting cards and messages of support. Her famous demand: “Sharpen your pencil!”
A Tulare County resident, DePaoli and her husband farm more than 400 acres of almonds, cherries and citrus. Before that, she worked in Bakersfield as an appraiser for a financial institution. DePaoli grew up on a ranch, and has passed that tradition of farm life to her children and seven granddaughters, ages 1-7 years old.
Fresno County resident Shafer currently serves as senior vice president of Zenith Insurance Co. She’s a 43-year veteran of the insurance industry. She lives on the ranch where her husband Jack’s family has lived for five generations. Share has been a driving force of Zenith’s ongoing engagement with the California Future Farms of America program. Zenith also offers two paid internships a year for Fresno State ag students.
The honorees will be recognized at a special luncheon on March 27 at the Clovis Veterans Memorial Hall in Clovis. The 23nd Annual Common Threads luncheon will begin at 11 a.m. and will feature award-winning Fresno State wines, a raffle and the Common Threads Award presentation. Tickets are $50 per person if purchased by March 15; $60 per person starting March 16. Space is limited.
For ticket information or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Emily Lazzerini at Ag Leadership, (831) 585-1030; or Shannon Fast at Ag One (559) 278-4266.