Jim Lanter Chosen Antioch’s 2010 Citizen of the Year

Antioch's Citizen of the Year Jim Lanter speaks at the Antioch Chamber of Commerce's Annual Gala, while Chamber Board Member Donna McGee and officials and representatives, including Brian Hooker of Congressman Garamendi's office, Mayor Jim Davis, Councilwoman Mary Rocha, Mayor Pro Tem Wade Harper and Supervisor Federal Glover listen.

By Antioch Chamber of Commerce

Jim Lanter was honored by the Antioch Chamber of Commerce at its annual Gala on tonight, Aprill 22 by being named 2010 Antioch Citizen of the Year. The other nominees were Pastor Kirkland A. Smith of Grace Bible Fellowship and Josie Monaghan, who is focused on serving the needs of military service men and women, and their families.

In his acceptance speech, Jim stated “Passion is something you have inside if you have the right vehicle you can ride on.” He introduces his family, including his mother, who was in attendance at the dinner.

An agent with State Farm Insurance, Jim has lived in Antioch for over 50 years and is a member of the Antioch High class of 1966. It was at Antioch High where Jim met his wife Earlene. They have been married over 45 years and have two sons, Jim and Jeff who also live in Antioch. Jim and Earlene love spending time with their family, which includes six grandchildren.

Jim started community service in Antioch at a young age. He was a PTA president at Bidwell Elementary School. He has served on the Antioch Little League board of directors. He is currently on the Delta Advocacy board; is a board member and past president of the Rotary Club of the Delta. He is co-chair for An Elderly Wish Foundation and is a current member of the Antioch Economic Development Committee.

Although Jim loves helping with the aforementioned organizations, his real passion the special needs community for adults and children in the Antioch area. In 1986 while acting as DJ for a wedding Jim noticed a special needs couple who danced the entire night. After the reception was over Jim introduced himself to the couple and their parents. One of the parents mentioned that it was too bad that the special needs community did not have a place to dance on a regular basis.

Antioch Citizen of the Year Jim Lanter enjoys an early copy of the front cover of the Antioch Herald newspaper in which his article and photo appear. photos by Allen Payton

A month later Jim met with one of the parents and in October on 1986, Born to Dance, a dance group for special needs adults was started. This year Born to Dance is celebrating its 25th anniversary. With the help of many volunteers there have been over 220 dances.

Four years ago Jim was asked to bring his passion and love for music to the special needs kids’ community. He helps as DJ and sponsor for an annual Christmas party each year. This past Christmas the party was held at Paradise Skate in Antioch and over 225 special needs kids were in attendance.

Mike Quintana, a long time friend, had been doing the dances and asked for some support.

I could not wait to help out” Jim said.

Jim is also active with the Antioch Little League Challenger program, for special needs youth, as a sponsor and can be found watching the Challengers play on Sundays during the season.

Last year Jim hosted the year end party for the challenger league. It was mentioned at one of the dances a few years ago that Jim had donated over 1200 hours to the special needs community in the East County.

Jim’s son Jim steps in for him when he is out of town to make sure the music never dies. Jim will have to take over some day and I am confident that as long as our special needs friends need a place to dance the Lanter family will be involved. We have received so much more from this special community than we have given.

Jim’s reaction to his nomination for citizen of the year – “I am humbled and thankful. This is a great way to bring attention to a very special community who has taught me the real meaning of giving.,” he said. “My special needs friends give me energy and love in a way that just makes my heart ‘dance’ whenever I am around them.”

I have been truly blessed to have been introduced to this amazing community,” he added.

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

the attachments to this post:

Jim Lanter with cover of the Herald

Jim Lanter speaks while officials look on

No Comments so far.

Leave a Reply