Two CEC Board Members, Eileen Kim (right) and Shirley Lee (left), were surprised to learn that they have been named winners of the Jefferson Award, which has honored public service in the U.S. for more than 50 years, for creating and managing the Citizens Environmental Council’s Student Film Fest since 2018.

KPIX-TV filmed them recently, along with students from Burlingame High School’s Environmental Club and The Nueva School’s Social Impact Filmmaking Club, for a segment that is expected to air on the station during the 5 p.m. newscast on Wednesday, April 3.

“We have no idea who nominated us,” said Eileen, “but we hope this award will help more people learn about the Film Fest.” The 7th Annual CEC Student Film Fest will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 24, at Burlingame High School at 1 Mangini Way in Burlingame. Admission is free, but registration is requested at burlingamefilmfest.com.

Each year the two friends organize a filmmaking workshop/conference for younger students that is taught by local high school students in preparation for the Film Fest. Young people in grades 4 through 8 who live or attend school in San Mateo County are invited to enter an original environmental video, not more than five minutes long, in the annual CEC Student Film Fest. There is no charge to enter. Winning entries are screened and cash prizes are awarded, courtesy of Peninsula Clean Energy, to students in three age categories. A grand prize winner is honored with an additional cash prize.

As winners of the Jefferson Award, they join hundreds of national figures in communities across the country who have been honored with the award. The award is offered by Multiplying Good, a national nonprofit focused on elevating public service as the means to empower individuals.