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'Community values award'

LOS ANGELES, CALIF.

Latter-day Saints in Southern California honored recently-retired Los Angeles City Councilman, Bill Rosendahl, with the “Community Values Award” on Sept. 22. Santa Monica California Stake President Levi Heath presented the award, a small statue of two cupped hands, in recognition of Councilman Rosendahl’s eight years of service to the surrounding community.

In presenting the award, President Heath spoke of Councilman Rosendahl’s passion to serve all aspects of the community. “Bill championed as his signature causes the homeless, the veteran, and the seniors. Who among us is not proud to endorse, commemorate and celebrate the service given to so many who were without an advocate?”

As he accepted the award, Councilman Rosendahl spoke of formative experiences in Ethiopia as a young man that shaped his desire to serve: “Ethiopia was the first real starvation I had ever seen. People were dying because they couldn’t eat. I walked around and there were hundreds of kids, so I gave them money and everything I had on me. From that day on, every time I eat anything, I thank God I am privileged enough to be able to eat. To live on a planet right now in 2013 where there are people starving to death is totally unacceptable.”

Councilman Rosendahl said many of his goals overlap with those of the Church, explaining, “The messages are the same: love yourself, love your neighbor as yourself and don’t judge. That is our religion right here. It’s about love. I don’t care if you’re a Muslim, Buddhist, a Jew, a Christian, an atheist — we’re all connected.”

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