Steve Soboroff and David Herbst

Venice-Marina Lions and LAPD distribute toys


On January 25th, the Westchester Family YMCA will honor two business leaders who have exemplified, personally and professionally, a commitment to the fundamental principles that are the cornerstone of the YMCA’s mission.

Playa Vista head Steve Soboroff will be presented with the 2007 Hero of the Year and David A. Herbst, senior vice president of MWW Group, will be presented with the YMCA’s 2007 Community Pillar Award at the first Kids Need Heroes Gala.

The event is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on Friday, January 25th, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 5985 W. Century Blvd. in Westchester.

Tickets are $125 per person, and sponsorships are available. Proceeds from the event will go to YMCA programs. For information or to purchase tickets, (310) 227-8100.

Soboroff is president of Playa Vista, one of the nation’s most significant multi-use land projects. The real estate executive and former president of the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Commission oversees all aspects of the Playa Vista project now under construction.

He served as president of the Recreation and Parks Commission from 1995 to 2001, reinvigorating the city’s park system to better meet the recreational needs of the people of Los Angeles. In addition, he helped spearhead the Alameda Corridor Project and the Staples Center, and received 21 percent of the vote in the 2001 mayoral primary in Los Angeles.

Soboroff, who was chairman emeritus of Big Brothers, and is currently on the board of governors of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles, has long been known as a business leader and public servant who brings people together to get positive results.

He received the “Los Angeles Beautiful” award for restoration of commercial buildings on Montana Avenue.

Prior to serving as president of the Recreation and Parks Commission, he was a member of the city’s Harbor Commission. He currently is a trustee of the Weingart Foundation and a director of the First Federal Bank.

A successful real estate executive who was honored as Harvard Business School’s “Business Statesman of the Year,” Soboroff holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in finance, insurance and real estate from the University of Arizona.

He resides in Pacific Palisades with his wife Patti and their five children.

Herbst is general manager of MWW Group’s Los Angeles office and has led numerous high-profile public relations and public affairs campaigns, including ones directed at saving the Los Angeles Air Force Base and resolving the decades-old fight on LAX, as well as overseeing public relations activities for the $2.2-billion Los Angeles Community College District construction program.

Prior to joining MWW Group, Herbst was executive vice president of American Standard Development Company.ÝHe has also served as vice president of corporate affairs at Playa Vista as well as drector of corporate relations for Mercury Air Group, Inc. Herbst has also led his own public relations firm based in Los Angeles.

He is a director of the William H. Hannon Foundation, which focuses its primary financial support on schools and nonprofit organizations throughout Southern California.

Herbst also serves as a member of the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts advisory board at his alma mater, Loyola Marymount University (LMU), and is a member of the board of governors of Otis College of Art and Design.

In 1999-2000, Herbst served as Honorary Mayor of Westchester/Marina del Rey. He has previously served as chairman of the board of managers of the Westchester Family YMCA.

Herbst holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from LMU and is a lifetime member of the National Jesuit Honor Society, Alpha Sigma Nu.

Herbst, his wife Nathalie, and their daughters Katherine, Margaret and Elizabeth live in Westchester.

LIONS CLUB TOY DRIVE — The Venice Marina Lions Club recently donated hundreds of toys to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Pacific Area Christmas Toy drive. The toys were presented to needy children at Oakwood Recreation Center and Mar Vista Gardens December 16th and 17th.

The effort included visits from Santa in the “LAPD Sleigh” as well as cookies and other refreshments for the children and their families.