SAN MARCOS, CA (August 22, 2016) – The Palomar College President’s Associates hosts its 25th annual gala on Saturday, September 10 at the Rancho Bernardo Inn, starting at 5:30 p.m..

The Starlit Gala celebrates Palomar College’s 70 years of student success. Proceeds from the event provide scholarships, textbook assistance, program support and other resources for Palomar College students.

“As a Palomar College graduate who now runs a multimillion dollar company, I’m an example of what the opportunity to pursue education means,” said Starlit Gala chair Don Adair, Senior Vice President, General Manager at Swinerton Builders. “I invite the community to join me for a fun-filled evening that will help make that same opportunity accessible to hundreds of students.”

The evening’s events include live and silent auctions, fine dining in a classic venue, entertainment, and a live dance band. In keeping with the College’s 70th Anniversary celebration, the Palomar Encore Dancers will perform to songs representing the seven decades of the college’s history. In addition, Palomar Fashion Design students will present a show featuring styles through the decades.

“Hundreds of students every year are able to stay in school, complete their education, and be successful because of this event,” said Palomar College Foundation Executive Director Richard Talmo.

Comet Award Honoree

The annual Comet Award, which recognizes community leadership and service, will be presented to Kathy Issa. For several decades, Issa has been a philanthropic force in support of Palomar College along with many other worthwhile nonprofits throughout the San Diego region. The Issa Family Foundation has distributed more than $15 million to organizations addressing pressing human needs such as access to education, homelessness, food insecurity, the needs of military veterans, and medical care for underserved populations.

Bid for Fun

The silent and a live auctions will provide guests with many opportunities to obtain unique items ranging from spa visits and jewelry to vacation visits at accessible local and regional resorts, a private planetarium experience for a personal or corporate group, and numerous student and alumni works of art in a variety of media.

“Many people attend the gala every year just so they can take part in the auctions,” said Talmo. “Thanks to the generous donations from local merchants and the contributions of alumni, students and community members, 100% of each bid benefits Palomar College students.”

After the evening’s program and dinner, guests are invited to stay and enjoy and dance to music by the Mark Lessman Band.

Gala Tickets

Gala tickets are $300 each. Tables of 10, which include preferential seating and sponsorship recognition, are $3000 each.

Gala reservations, event information and sponsorship opportunities are available and updated regularly at or by calling 760-744-1150 ext. 2732.

“We invite the community to join us for an evening that is fun and contributes to the success of our students and our local communities,” said Talmo.


Media contacts:  Melinda Finn, Public Affairs Office, 760-744-1150 x2365
Laura Gropen, Public Affairs Department, 760-744-1150 x2152