Each year the ARCS Light award is given to a member of each ARCS Foundation chapter who has displayed commitment and long-term service at the chapter level. The recipients are honored for serving in board/leadership positions, establishing Scholar funds and collaborating with university partners, chairing special events and recruiting new members, and providing expertise in chapter operations.
2022-2023 San Diego ARCS Light Recipient: Holly Heaton
Holly Heaton joined the ARCS San Diego Chapter in 2012. With her background as an attorney and an RN, she brings outstanding acumen and talent to her volunteer leadership, and is passionate about promoting science and technology in our Scholars.
Ms. Heaton possesses a wealth of qualities that greatly factor into her success as an ARCS colleague and mentor. She is a transformational leader, strategic thinker, collaborative team player and an absolute dynamo. She has that ineffable spark of optimism that ignites passion and commitment from others. She is persistent, curious, and open to learning and trying new things. She recognizes the power of people working together and creating solutions.
Over the past decade, Ms. Heaton has served on the ARCS Communications, Fund Development, University Relations, Scientist of the Year (SOY), Nominating and Membership Committees - in several Vice President and Director roles. Most importantly, Ms. Heaton served as ARCS San Diego Chapter President for 3 consecutive years.
With Holly Heaton at the helm, the San Diego chapter navigated the pandemic and adapted to its many challenges resulting in record- breaking success in fundraising and in increased awareness of ARCS and its mission in the region and beyond.
Her contributions to ARCS National are also significant, having served on the Council of Presidents (CoP) for four years, the first three as a President and this past year as a CoP representative. Ms. Heaton also serves as co-chair of the UR Collaboration Network along with Chris Simpson-Brent and Joan Foley.
In addition to her commitment to ARCS, Ms. Heaton also serves on the Board of Sharp Healthcare Foundation and previously served on the board and as president of the San Diego Blood Bank. She was recognized by the Salvation Army of San Diego County as a Woman of Dedication in 2022 and serves as a Patron of this organization.
Ms Heaton resides in Del Mar, California with her husband, Dr. Robert Heaton. They have two grown daughters.