In a continuation of our series on Benicia Couples who are committed to our community, no Benicia list would be complete without Tom and Patty Gavin.
Where do we start? Ladies First!
Patty Gavin’s service to Benicia goes in many directions. She taught for over 20 years at St. Dominic’s School in a variety of positions, but most of the time as a sixth grade teacher. While at St. Dominic’s, Patty started the Theatre Arts Program which continues today. In the 1990s, she was an instructor for the drug awareness program “Here’s Looking at You 2000” at a number of elementary schools in Benicia. She also taught art for 10 years at Holy Spirit School in Fairfield.
Besides her legacy as a teacher, Patty’s dedication to the Benicia Arts Community is exemplary. She served on the Benicia Arts and Culture Commission for 6 years and was the Chair from 2015-2016. She was a major force in helping to commission the public art piece “Wind, Water, Land” at the Community Center, and coordinated the collaboration of the 7 local artists who created it. While on the Commission, she helped write and adopt the Pubic Art Guidelines for the acquisition of public art for the City of Benicia. Her commitment to art continues today as the Committee Chair for Benicia Library’s Marilyn O’Rourke Art Gallery, which oversees the installation of rotating exhibits during the year.
Patty has shared her talent on stage appearing in several Benicia Old Town Theatre Group performances, including Mack and Mable, Sugar Babies and a Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
Patty is an active member of Soroptimist International of Benicia. Her work on behalf of the Soroptimist House of Hope, a safe house for women and families in transition, has helped coordinate the donation of furniture, comfort baskets, books, toys, and Christmas decorations. She is currently working with fellow Soroptimists on the Centennial Celebration of the adoption of the 19th Amendment. This involvement and her leadership in helping form the first Relay For Life of Benicia has made a difference for those in need within our community.
Patty is a graduate of St. Vincent’s High School and her 1969 women’s basketball team was inducted into both the City of Vallejo and St. Patrick-St. Vincent Hall of Fame. Known for her tenacious defense on the court, Patty has brought that tenacity as a positive force in Benicia.
Although it may be hard to go toe to toe with his lovely wife, Tom Gavin has shown that he, too, is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to Benicia.
Tom has held numerous positions in the community. He was the first Chairman of the Board of Solano Bank 2009, Former President of the Benicia Chamber of Commerce in 1987, Chairman of Valero Community Advisory Panel (CAP), Former President of Benicia Rotary, President of Benicia Main Street in 1988, Former Treasurer of Benicia Library Foundation, President of St. Patrick-St. Vincent Board of Regents, a candidate for Benicia City Council in 1987, Founding member of the Benicia Downtown Business Alliance and a student mentor at Liberty High School.
In his spare time, Tom is a full partner in Gavin and Schreiner Insurance Company along with Tami Schreiner. They must be doing something right because their business has been named twice as the Benicia Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year and they have also received the prestigious Spirit of Solano Award.
The Gavin’s have been married 42 years and have two beautiful daughters, Meghan and Lauren, and two gorgeous granddaughters, Delaney and Brynn. Meghan is married and is an attorney in Sacramento. Lauren is a newlywed and lives in Washington DC, working for the Federal Government. Patty and Tom have been very active at St. Dominic’s Church and School for over 40 years. Thanks to both of them for sharing their talents and dedication to serve Benicia!