After fielding over 75 nominations, our panel of "hero" judges bestowed awards in eight separate categories. Recipients will be honored in the Pleasanton Weekly and online at PleasantonWeekly.com, TriValleyViews.com, SanRamonExpress.com and DanvilleExpress.com. Two Heroes will be profiled each Friday, Nov. 23 to Dec. 14.
This year's honorees, by category, are:
* Arts and Culture: Jeff Seaberg, Danville -- Actor, director and children's theater teacher
* Community Spirit: Chris Miller, Pleasanton -- Pleasanton Military Families founder and veterans' advocate.
* Courage: Sandra J. Wing, Pleasanton -- Cancer survivor and founder of Sandra J. Wing Healing Therapies Foundation, which offers support to Tri-Valley cancer residents.
* Environmental Stewardship: Sustainable Danville Area -- Encourages sustainable programs that support a healthy quality of life and a strong local economy.
* Innovation: San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District -- Conceived of and piloted the PulsePoint cell phone application, which alerts CPR-trained residents when a person is suffering from sudden cardiac arrest nearby.
* Role Model: Cassandra Bankson, Danville -- Severely bullied as a child because of her extreme cystic acne, and now a professional model, Bankson is helping others who suffer from acne to look their best.
* Rising Star: Claire Williams, Pleasanton -- Created the Read-to-a-Teen program, in which teen volunteers help young students become more confident in their reading ability and build comprehension skills.
* The 2012 Lifetime Achievement award will recognize Robert "Bob" Tucknott, Pleasanton, who has served as a community leader and past captain of the Alameda County Sheriff's Air Squadron helping support law enforcement, and is a pilot with Angel Flight, which arranges free air transportation via private aircraft for those in medical and financial need so they can travel to access healthcare.