The Sparks Elks Lodge 2397 awarded its annual CItizen of the Year award to Denise Roberto on February 11. Denise organizes the annual Angel Tree program on behalf of the lodge. The Angel Tree program is where needy children identify Christmas gifts they wish for and in which members and their families and friends contribute gifts. Through Denise’s efforts, the Angel Tree program is complemented by additional donations providing Christmas meals to five families. Both the Angel Tree and meal programs support the students and families of the Comprehensive Life Skills Program (i.e., learning impairment program) of the Washoe County School District with one program location right here in Sparks at Marvin Moss Elementary School.
Contributing to Denise’s selection for this award, for the past three years Denise has participated in the spring and fall Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful (KTMB) river cleanup efforts and the KTMB Christmas Tree recycling efforts. Denise has tried to instill these community service values by bringing her granddaughters to these events.
Although not an Elk member, Denise has spent many hours over the past years supporting the lodge through her efforts in cleaning the facility, cooking meals for Friday night dinners and serving meals when others cook. Denise runs the now annual, free September bingo game at the lodge to include obtaining and organizing the prizes, calling the game, purchasing and cooking foods for participants.