Assemblymember Frazier Names Lisa Rico As Woman of the Year for 2015

Monday, March 9, 2015

Sacramento, CA Today, Assemblymember Jim Frazier (D – Oakley) honored Lisa Rico on the Assembly Floor as his 2015 Woman of the Year for the 11th Assembly District.

Rico, a 26-year resident of Vacaville, has committed her personal and professional life to enriching the lives of those around her. For 20 years, she ran a small marketing firm in Vacaville that catered to the needs of local businesses and non-profit groups. Rico later decided to close the firm and instead devote her spare time to humanitarian efforts that she was passionate about – art, the empowerment of girls and women, and her community.

"Being able to work on projects that matter means a great deal to me,” said Rico. “To be honored for the same means even more."

Rico traveled with Women for Women International founder, Zainab Salbi, to Bosnia, Croatia and Rwanda to promote the women’s rights in Third World countries. In 2010, she began an art project in Africa at an upper secondary boarding school for girls. For three consecutive summers, Rico travelled to Rwanda and held daily art lessons for students.

During her time there, Rico established a special relationship with one of the orphan students, Chantal Mahoro. The relationship eventually progressed into a “quasi-adoption,” which ultimately allowed Chantal to come to the United States and study at Arizona State University.

In addition to her philanthropic work overseas, Rico has conducted numerous art shows and special events to benefit local nonprofits, including the Vacaville Museum and the Opportunity House. In 2011 Rico held the “Africa-We Connect” event at the Vacaville Museum to focus on the community’s connections to Africa. As an artist, her work primarily focuses on women and children, many of whom are survivors of war in Rwanda.

Currently, Rico is working on a public art project that features 25 four-foot tall, fiberglass jackrabbits that have been painted, embellished and adorned by 25 area artists. The jackrabbits will be on public display around Vacaville from March – May 2015, and in June, will be auctioned off to raise money for the Vacaville Museum.

“The admiration I have for Lisa’s commitment to the empowerment of women cannot be understated,” said Assemblymember Frazier. “Her extraordinary passion for community is apparent in the exceptional work she does, and I am honored to name her my 2015 Woman of the Year for the 11th Assembly District.”

Assemblymember Frazier honored Rico in a ceremony this afternoon at the California State Capitol with an Assembly Resolution naming her an exemplary California woman.

To contact Assemblymember Jim Frazier please visit his website at http://www.asmdc.org/members/a11/ or call his District Offices at 707-399-3011 or 925-778-5790.

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