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For Immediate Release 

Tanya Peebles-Hill
(213) 236-5329

Nina Ronstadt
(619) 224-3186

SAN DIEGO (February 11, 2013) – As part of its ongoing commitment to cultural diversity and responsible banking, Union Bank, N.A., partnered with KPBS to honor 16 local individuals who are making a difference to enrich the lives of others. The honorees were announced throughout 2012 as part of the Cultural Diversity Partnership, which recognizes and pays tribute to local heroes from eight diverse communities, and the year-long celebration of diversity culminated with a ceremony and reception on February 5, 2013, at the San Diego Natural History Museum. Recipients were formally recognized for their work that helps improve not only their local communities, but the region, the nation and the world.

The 2012 Local Heroes recognized are: JiAel Brownell and Bishop Roy Dixon (Black History Month); Michelle Houle and Dr. Doris A. Howell (Women’s History Month); Dennis-Michael Broussard and Mike Kawamura (Asian Pacific American Heritage Month); Jill Borg Spitzer and Gussie Zaks (Jewish American Heritage Month); Larry T. Baza and Jeri Dilno (LGBT Pride Month); Michael A.V. Cruz and Danny Gutierrez (Hispanic Heritage Month); Louis Frick and Laurel Moorhead (Disability Awareness Month); and Patricia A. Dixon and Leroy Elliott (Native American Heritage Month).

“Diversity and inclusion are an important part of our Union Bank heritage, and we are proud of our Local Heroes program in partnership with KPBS that celebrates cultural diversity in our communities,” said Union Bank Senior Executive Vice President Pierre P. Habis, head of Community Banking. “The program shines a spotlight on the accomplishments of extraordinary individuals, and we are thrilled to honor them with the recognition they deserve.”

The host for the evening was Kathi Diamant, an award-winning actor, author, broadcaster and adjunct professor at San Diego State University.

About UnionBanCal Corporation & Union Bank, N.A.
Headquartered in San Francisco, UnionBanCal Corporation is a financial holding company with assets of $97 billion at December 31, 2012. Its primary subsidiary, Union Bank, N.A., is a full-service commercial bank providing an array of financial services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, and major corporations. The bank operated 447 branches in California, Washington, Oregon, Texas, Illinois, and New York as well as two international offices, on December 31, 2012. UnionBanCal Corporation is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd., which is a subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. Union Bank is a proud member of the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG, NYSE:MTU), one of the world's largest financial organizations. Visit for more information.

About KPBS
KPBS serves our local communities with news and entertainment programming that respects our audience with inspiring, intelligent and enlightening content. KPBS will deliver this content via multiple outlets, including television, radio, and digital media and will adapt and remain relevant in a rapidly changing world. KPBS values integrity, truth, transparency and lifelong learning. At KPBS we strive to engage with our citizens and showcase the unique neighborhoods and people that make our community thrive. And as a public service of San Diego State University, education is a core value – from our children’s programming to our local news coverage. KPBS is committed to being a reliable source for in-depth, thoughtful, and high quality content.