For the second year in a row, L.A. Parent collected nominations from families across L.A., looking for a Dad Hero. We even wrangled celebrity judge and L.A. dad Mark Steines to offer a dad’s parenting perspective.
We finally settled on Willam Evans, a father of two from Hollywood. Here’s what his wife, Johanna Voutounou, had to say about the father of her children:
My husband works 12 to 14 hours a day as a camera assistant, yet he still finds the time to serve tea to royalty, save the world from falling asteroids, slay dragons, battle pirates, do science experiments, attend mermaid fashion shows, find lost teddy bears and travel to the Moon.
People who know William are in awe at how much attention he gives his daughters. They often applaud him for all the sacrifices he has made in his own personal life to give these two lucky girls 100 percent of himself during his limited free time.
They are right, William has sacrificed a lot since his daughters were born. He does not wrestle any more, or run and hike as much as he used to. He is no longer the guy to call when you want to go see a movie on a Saturday night or take an impromptu camping trip. These are all things he did love to do. However, this was not the sacrifice.
William always wanted to be a dad. Even before we were married he would talk about having children of his own. When I became pregnant with our first daughter, I had a job that I loved. So, when the question of who would stay home with our newborn came up, William eagerly volunteered. However, when Marianna came into our lives, William saw how difficult it was for me to return to work after my maternity leave. He knew how important it was to me that I breastfeed, and when the bottle feeding was not working out, he sacrificed his dream of being a stay-at-home dad to return to work. Our second daughter came quickly after, and although I tried to return to work and give William the chance to stay at home, I could not find a job that could support the four of us. So William sacrificed his dream again to go back to work.
I will be forever grateful to him for his sacrifices, and although he did not get to be at home with them as much as he wanted, he has made the most of every precious moment he has had with them. He is truly the best dad.
Johanna also let daughters Marianna, 6, and Nyla, 4, chime in about their father.
“My dad is William. My dad is Batman, my dad is Captain Hook, my dad is a secret agent, a scientist and an astronaut. My dad is my best friend,” wrote Marianna.
“Daddy knows the way to Neverland,” wrote Nyla. “He doesn’t need a map, only a hook.”
Their input impressed us – and fellow judge Mark Steines. “Long work hours, committed husband and willingness to dress up for a stint in fairytale land? How could William not be my hero!” Steines said in casting his vote for William.
The lucky dad and his family will receive a prize package valued at more than $2,100 that includes a two-night stay at the beachfront Bacara Resort & Spa (www.bacararesort.com), Island Whale Watching tickets with Condor Whale Watching (www.condorexpress.com), tickets to the Santa Barbara Zoo (www.sbzoo.org) and special perks such as a giraffe feeding, and dinner at Pascucci (www.pascuccirestaurant.com) Italian restaurant.