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Governor and first lady mark national volunteer week by honoring Maine citizens

Published April 15, 2011

AUGUSTA–Governor Paul R. LePage inducted 556 volunteers into Maine’s Roll of Honor during an afternoon ceremony marking the celebration of National Volunteer Week. The Roll of Honor recognizes volunteers who donate 500 hours or more of documented service to the community during the past twelve months. The volunteers honored come from every corner of the state and include 33 people who volunteer more than 2,000 hours annually. Governor Paul R. LePage said, "Volunteers offer a valuable service to communities across Maine, and I thank those who take the time to make a difference." A complete list of volunteers inducted into the Roll of Honor can be found on VolunteerMaine.org.

First Lady Ann LePage presented the 2011 Governor’s Awards for Service and Volunteerism in five categories at a State House ceremony in the Hall of Flags. Each category highlights exceptional local service work that impacts a critical community need.

The Governor’s Awards celebration takes place each year in conjunction with National Volunteer Week and recipients include Maine businesses, schools, educators, and individuals. The award program is administered for the Governor’s Office by the Maine Commission for Community Service. 

2011Awards and Recipients: School District Excellence in Service-learning awarded to MDI  Regional School System, and Mount Desert Island. Over the course of their K-12 education, every student in the Mount Desert Island Regional School System participates in service-learning activities. This school district has even established a Service-learning Leadership Team to bring this highly effective method of teaching to the next generation.  Students’ work has real-world practical applications that not only enhance their knowledge but also make a difference in their community.

Corporate Volunteerism Award awarded to TD Bank, Portland. The commitment of TD Bank to community service goes from top to bottom. Members of the executive team helped lead the first ever Cumberland County Coalition on Food Security and Larry Wold, Maine President, recently stepped up to help with the creation of a first time home buyers resource center. Maine has benefited from TD Bank’s commitment to Affordable Housing, Education/Financial Literacy, and the Environment in addition to their support of Health and Human Service organizations. The employee volunteers at TD Bank have donated over 26,000 hours of their time.

Maine’s Outstanding Non-Profit Award awarded to Operation Tribute,Gorham.  In 2007, Operation Holiday Cheer was conceived and launched in Maine with the support of a number of corporations, individuals and civic organizations. In that first year, over 9,000 gifts were distributed to children in over 140 cities and towns throughout the State of Maine. Due to their amazing work, the organization received nationwide attention and the program expanded. Renamed “Operation Tribute,” the organization acknowledges the sacrifices being made by the children of all military families living in New England, New York and New Jersey by offering them a holiday gift. Most recently, Operation Tribute provided over 23,000 holiday gifts to children in military families. Among them were 7,200 Maine children.

Volunteer of the Year awarded toRussell Osgood, Cape Neddick. Russell has served the Southern Maine region for over 25 years. He has committed over 750 hours of service through his work at the Fire Department, local homeless shelters, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, the Pine Tree State 4-H Foundation and numerous other organizations.  As a 4-H leader, Russell has been instrumental in engaging youth and adults in true partnerships to raise food for Maine residents who do not have enough to eat. Through this project, he has taught kids the value of teamwork, provided an example of how people working together can make a difference in the community, and raised the awareness among youth that some neighbors do not have enough to make ends meet. 

Youth Volunteer of the Year awarded to Nickolas Bray, Berwick. At 16 years old, Nickolasfound time to dedicate over 300 hours last year to the town’s library, Noble Earthworks and the Berwick Energy Planning Committee. Through Nick’s work at the library he has made a tremendous impact: maintaining collections, providing support to staff and patrons and developing the library’s website to better assist residents of the town who use the library. In addition, he is the founding member of the Teen Advisory Group which created programs designed to encourage other youth to visit and use the library.

National Service Volunteer Award awarded toHeather Correia, BiddefordAs an AmeriCorps member for Goodwill, Heather has gone far beyond what her service assignment requires. She eagerly organizes AmeriCorps events, spreads the word about national service, and matches at-risk youth with healthy and positive mentors. She is a shining example of the impact national service volunteers have. Heather has managed a number of different responsibilities including GoodGuides, a mentoring program for 13-17 year old at-risk youth. She has organized career workshops and mentor appreciation events. Heather also served as an employment counselor for Goodwill helping those seeking employment to overcome economic and social barriers. 

Outstanding Service-learning Practitioner awarded to Holly MacEwan, Falmouth. It is often hard to measure the impact of teachers, but for Holly, the impact on her students is far-reaching and long lasting. Through Holly’s work with Service-learning in the Falmouth School District, she has brought service-learning to nearly 2,100 students. Falmouth High School students are involved in projects such as the Falmouth Food Pantry, Save Darfur Organizations, and support for Sudanese refugees. Under her direction, ten students travelled to Mississippi to assist in a Habitat for Humanity project. The energy and enthusiasm with which she approaches her work provides an exemplary model for students, staff and community members alike. 

Outstanding Volunteer in a Public Sector Volunteer Program awarded to Emmy Brown, South Portland. Emmy has served for the past 16 years at the Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland. Every year she volunteers more than 1,200 hours. Emmy spends an enormous amount of time nurturing the relationships that she develops with both residents and community volunteers. Her work doesn’t end there. After residents leave the facility she continues to offer herself as a resource so that those who leave become successful contributing members of society. Emmy has also served on the board of the Friends of Long Creek, a non-profit that provides support to Long Creek residents.

Excellence in Volunteer Administration awarded toBeverly Larochelle, Bangor. For nine years, Beverly has been the Volunteer Coordinator at Penquis Lynx Transportation. Through this time, she has grown the program from 70 drivers to over 150 and is a prime example of the tremendous impact administrators make in the management of their volunteers. She honors her volunteers by recognizing their work, listening to their concerns and praising their commitment. If there was ever anyone to go the ‘extra mile’ it is Beverly. These are just a few examples of the work she does to not only provide good services but also recognize the outstanding work of her volunteers.

The Maine Commission for Community Service builds capacity and sustainability in Maine's volunteer and service communities by funding programs, developing managers of volunteers and service-learning practitioners, raising awareness of sector issues, and promoting service as a strategy.  To learn more about the Maine Commission for Community Service visit our web-site at www.maineservicecommission.gov