After two years of virtual events, Hospice of Santa Barbara’s (HSB) Heroes of Hospice (HOH) is back in person and will be honoring local heroes, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22 at Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort’s Plaza del Sol.

HSB’s Heroes of Hospice Luncheon honors the people and organizations that bring compassion and care, at all levels, to those in need in and near the Santa Barbara community. This year’s heroes include:

Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics with the Medical Hero Award; Santa Barbara High School with the Partnership Hero Award; and Hospice of Santa Barbara Bereavement Staff with the Staff Hero Award.

Throughout these past two years, the demand for HSB’s services has been growing. Fundraisers like HOH allow the organization to reach our community members struggling with grief or life-threatening illness, free of charge.

“We are very excited to be back in person this year and to focus on What Matters Most to us,” said David Selberg, CEO of Hospice of Santa Barbara. “This will be a very special event honoring amazing heroes in our community with great special guest speakers.”

This year, Heroes of Hospice’s theme is What Matters Most, which poses the question “What matters most in my life?” “What marks a life well-lived?” “Is it how much money I made or things I acquired?” Or is it rather “How many lives I touched and how much love I shared?”

When grief or illness touch our lives, we are often reminded of what really matters most to us: the people we love, the meaningful actions we take, and the simple pleasures of life — the sun on our face, traveling, family, spirituality.

After a couple of challenging years, which have given many people a new perspective, HSB’s luncheon presents
 an opportunity to examine what really matters to us as individuals and as a community. 

This year’s event will also feature special guest speakers William Peters, Mari Hernandez and Rolf Geyling.

Peters is recognized as an authority on the shared death experience (SDE). He conducts workshops and presents internationally. Peters’ innovative work has been featured on CNN and other media outlets worldwide. He is the author of “At Heaven’s Door,” published by Simon & Schuster.

Geyling has dedicated his life to serving organizations that lift people out of poverty and addiction and currently heads Santa Barbara Rescue Mission. He is regularly engaged as a pulpit preacher, conference speaker, workshop facilitator, and organizational consultant. He was awarded the Westmont Medal in 2015 for Santa Barbara leadership.

Hernandez is a licensed clinical social worker and has a private counseling practice. Her life’s mission is to build a social enterprise that supports and inspires Conscious Living and Conscious Parenting.

After the death of her son, Mari created Vida Center, a nonprofit organization formed to help youth, families and communities build and develop the skills and resources needed to live, succeed and thrive.

To learn more and purchase tickets, visit