by Darcey Leach
Grace Hill, an innovator of talent and customer management solutions for commercial and multifamily real estate, today announced the winners of the inaugural 2022 Impact Hero Awards program, an annual recognition of both people and organizations for building relationships, helping others in need and making a positive impact in their communities.
Joe King, superintendent of construction for Fairfield Residential in San Diego, was awarded first place for establishing Golf Fore Autism, a charitable organization that advocates for autism awareness and resources. King formed Golf Fore Autism when encountered challenges navigating the path of his son’s autism diagnosis. With King’s leadership and passion, what started as a fundraising golf tournament now stands independently to advocate for this underserved community.
“I created the nonprofit mostly based on frustration by the lack of awareness and understanding,” King explained. “Also, I realized that opportunities existed for my son, but I was never made aware of them, not even by educators. I always remind myself [that] God has a plan for each of us. I don’t believe my son was given to me by accident. I needed him; I found my purpose through him. We all have a purpose.”
In addition to raising awareness, Golf Fore Autism helps families navigate resources and available opportunities while providing scholarships to lessen the financial burden of outside therapies. The organization also gave $10,000 to Brain Balance, a brain and body wellness program for people with autism. Grace Hill will provide $3,500 to Golf Fore Autism, as well as a plaque recognizing King for his contributions to his community.
“Grace Hill is honored to present this award to Joe for his tireless efforts to bring awareness to a cause that is often misunderstood but affects so many,” said Kendall Pretzer, CEO of Grace Hill. “Through Golf For Autism, Joe has given help and hope to so many families dedicated to raising these amazing children, as well as providing them with much-needed resources and financial assistance. Joe truly represents the importance of giving back to communities.”
Second place was awarded to Sarah Ogle, community manager at Westwind Apartments in Portsmouth, Va., for her creation of RHCares, a company-wide philanthropic movement for Westwinds parent company, Ripley Heatwole Company, Inc. Third place went to Alyssa Carlucci, a projects associate with Rose Associates, Inc. in New York. Every Sunday for more than three years, Carlucci volunteers at Xavier Mission’s Welcome Table, which provides meals and food to those in need. The two runners-up will receive $2,000 and $1,000 charitable donations respectively.
The inaugural winners of the Grace Hill Impact Hero Awards were recognized at a ceremony on October 20, 2022, in Boulder, Colo.