A longtime Arcadia leader who has donated her time to a myriad of local organizations was named the 44th Assembly District's Woman of the Year and honored in a ceremony in Sacramento on Monday.
Beth Costanza, who served as the Executive Director of the Arcadia Chamber of Commerce for more than a decade and has been a longtime volunteer at the was singled out for the award by Assemblyman Anthony Portantino (D-La Cañada Flintridge).
Costanza said she learned of the award after receiving a call from Portantino two weeks ago.
"I think he actually asked my permission to be Woman of the Year and I told him I was amazed and thank you very much and I would accept it," Costanza said.
Costanza retired from her position with the Arcadia Chamber of Commerce last week, where she had worked for the last 12 years. In addition to her volunteer efforts with Foothill Unity, Costanza has also worked for the Monrovia Chamber of Commerce, volunteered for the Monrovia Association of Fine Arts (MAFA), and served two terms on Monrovia's Community Services Commission. She has also served on the board of Foothill Family Services and volunteered as a Girl Scout leader.
"She is a tireless worker for our schools and our businesses and has earned the respect of our community," said Portantino in a written statement. "It is fitting that the State of California recognizes her many accomplishments."
On Monday, Costanza flew out to Sacramento and met with Portantino and his staff. She and about 80 other women were honored in a ceremony at the capitol Monday morning.
Costanza spent much of her time at each chamber helping small businesses and advising entrepreneurs, she said. A former small business owner herself, she and her husband Angelo Costanza ran Ballard's Butcher Block and the Cheyenne Supper Club in Arcadia.
Now that she's retired, Costanza said she plans to focus even more time on her volunteer efforts, though she hasn't decided exactly where that will be.
"I haven’t quite figured out where I’m going to volunteer but I will certainly be doing that," she said.