A local couple’s outstanding parenting skills earned them accolades from Paradise Valley Mayor Ed Winkler at Thursday’s Town Council meeting.
Dr. Ernesto M. Gomez and his wife, Linda, were recognized for being awarded as the 2007 National Parents of the Year by the National Parents’ Day Council.
“We are honored beyond belief,” Linda Gomez said Wednesday. “Being a parent is the most important thing that someone can ever do.”
The Gomezes have five children, ranging in age from 15 to 25.
They credit their award in large part to their family’s long-standing commitment to community service.
In 2006, the family received the National Philanthropic Award from the Society of St. Vincent de Paul for organizing a hugely successful canned food drive.
Additionally, Ernesto Gomez, an obstetrician, has served as a volunteer doctor and chaperone for numerous international service projects, and his wife has donated her time as a grievance counselor for families affected by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
His children have each earned awards for academic achievement, but Gomez said it’s their charitable efforts that define them.
“They consider charity as part of their life and always have,” he said. “I think it makes them better people.”
The Gomezes were nominated for the national award after their children nominated them as 2006 Arizona Parents of the Year.
The National Parents’ Day Council, the group that recognized them, is dedicated to promoting Parents’ Day, a national holiday created in 1994 and celebrated each year on the fourth Sunday in July.
The group’s Web site defines the day as a time when “parents honor their children and the God-centered family ideal by rededicating themselves to manifest the highest standard of unconditional true love.”