California Cities Helen Putnam Award for Excellence

Dublin Provides Affordable Housing for Veterans

An innovative public-private-nonprofit partnership transformed a former car dealership site into housing for veterans, comprising 66 units that are 100 percent affordable.

Encinitas Retools Planning to Increase Housing Options

The city retooled its existing zoning and standards to make it easier for property owners to add accessory dwelling units, also known as granny flats. Encinitas also successfully sponsored state legislation to make the changes possible.

Fontana Motivates Residents to Walk More and Improve Health

The city faced alarming rates of obesity in its community and launched an innovative effort to improve fitness among residents of all ages. The program exceeded its goals, and its popularity continues to increase.

West Sacramento’s On-Demand Ride-share Service Addresses Transit Needs

The ride-share service improves access to critical daily amenities and is helping to change the lives of transit-dependent residents. The program has improved mobility for all, especially seniors and youths.

Napa Lighted Art Festival Draws January Crowds

The Napa Lighted Art Festival takes a bold, contemporary approach to the visual arts by bringing emerging light technologies into the city’s streets, where buildings function as large outdoor canvases and attract crowds.

San Rafael’s Employee-Driven Effort Focuses on Meeting the Community’s Changing Needs

San Rafael asked city employees, “How would you design your department if you could create it today, rather than as it was created decades ago?”

Rancho Cucamonga’s Community Champions Engage Latino Residents

This program plays a critical role in developing health-related policies and programs that improve residents’ quality of life.

King City’s Comprehensive Plan to End Youth Violence

How a city that had the highest per capita murder rate in California turned things around.

Fresno Youth Commission Addresses Key Issues

This program shows the value of youth as a community and policy resource.

Santa Clarita Takes a Sustainable Approach to Economic Development

To build prosperity, the city develops and supports local talent.

Long Beach Public Art Festival Spurs Economic Activity

Artists create murals and other forms of art in a week-long event.

Milpitas Initiative Targets Workforce Development

The city helps local manufacturers attract qualified young workers.

Rancho Cucamonga Focuses on Community’s Mental Health Needs

An untreated mental health condition can have fatal consequences and a devastating impact on the community.

Garden Grove Empowers Residents and Improves a Neighborhood

Communicating with residents was key to developing solutions.

Patterson’s HOST House Tackles Homelessness

The city financed a transitional residence for its homeless population.

Porterville Provides Clean, Sustainable Water After Neighbors’ Wells Fail

The East Porterville Water Supply Project offers a model for helping to meet the clean and sustainable drinking water needs of disadvantaged communities.

Truckee’s Mini Mousehole Improves Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety

This project solved a major problem, and now people are encouraged to choose alternative forms of transportation.

La Quinta Transforms Its Workplace Culture to Better Serve the Community

The city set out to create an energetic and engaged workforce and foster a culture of creativity, innovation and passion.