West Sacramento, California — Rural Community Assistance Corporation awarded Peg Smith the Yoneo Ono award, which honors rural residents who have volunteered to make significant lifelong contributions to their community. RCAC’s Board of Directors will present the award at a virtual ceremony on Wednesday, Feb. 23, at 4 pm Pacific Time.

“Peg Smith is a shining example of the power of volunteerism,” said Suzanne Anarde, RCAC’s chief executive officer. “Her work as one of the founding members of the Boulder Community Alliance (BCA) helped create and nurture Boulder’s climate of volunteerism and community-wide cooperation.”

Ms. Smith was a founding BCA member, which serves rural Boulder, Utah. With a background in technology, she created an online bulletin board for residents to share news and information, dubbed the “Pegboard.” Over time, Pegboard became Boulder’s primary system for public announcements, meeting notices and a communication network for residents to sell, trade or donate goods and services. More recently, the community and local region rely on Pegboard as a COVID-19 information source. Pegboard kept people informed on local sources for masks, hand sanitizers and vaccination resources.

Ms. Smith also was the BCA newsletter, Sage Page, editor and co-founded Boulder’s Friends of the Library, a volunteer group that made the local library into a well-utilized community asset with an expanding books and publications collection. She writes a column covering Boulder for the Insider, a weekly newspaper that serves Boulder and all the communities in Garfield and Wayne counties.

Dave Conine nominated Peg Smith for the Yoneo Ono Award. Conine is a former RCAC housing specialist and now the economic development director at Utah Dine Bikeyah, a nonprofit that serves Indigenous populations in Utah. “Peg Smith’s volunteerism provides Boulder an extensive menu of services that significantly reduce the difficulties of living in a small, geographically isolated community. Her online bulletin board delivers important announcements and gives residents community wide networking and resource sharing. Peg volunteers her time and expertise to help Boulder’s Town Council and Planning Commission maintain their high standards and responsiveness to local issues,” Conine said.

RCAC established the award in honor of Yoneo Ono, one of RCAC’s founders. RCAC’s Board presented the initial award to Ono when he retired as a member in 1984 and in recognition of his lifelong commitment to rural development. The award, given every two years, honors rural residents in RCAC’s service area who have volunteered to make significant and sustainable contributions to their community.

About RCAC

Founded in 1978, RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and western Pacific islands. Services are available to communities with populations of fewer than 50,000, other nonprofit groups, Tribal organizations, farmworkers, colonias and other specific populations. RCAC staff provides direct services in program areas including affordable housing, environmental services, economic development and lending. About RCAC


Julia Helmreich, director
Communications, Development and Events
(916) 447-9832 ext. 1008