On June 11, 2014, the American Red Cross Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter held its’ Annual Board Meeting and Awards Celebration in the Fowler Blast Furnace Room at ArtsQuest from 5:30 P.M. to 7:15 P.M. Ms. Ellen Kern, Chief of Staff for Senator Patrick Browne, issued citations on behalf of Senators Browne and Lisa Boscola. Guest speaker and Red Cross Regional Disaster & Program Officer of the Northeast PA Region, Adrian Grieve, shared his memorable experiences working for the Red Cross, responding to many national disasters including: the US Air plane crash in Charlotte, NC; Sept. 11, 2001 tragedy; NJ floods; Hurricanes Andrew, Georges, Katrina and Rita; and the Boston Marathon Bombings.
During the business portion of the meeting, outgoing board members were recognized and new board members were welcomed, including: Caryn Dashukewich, VP HR Olympus Corporation of the Americas; Mike Peters, Sales Manager of Adams Outdoor Advertising; and youth board member Jesus Alvarez, a student at Parkland High School.
Peter M. Brown, Regional CEO and Executive Director of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter said, “I am honored to present individuals and organizations of the Lehigh Valley with these prestigious awards. Their willingness to support the Red Cross, both financially and through countless hours spent volunteering their time and talent, allows us to continue helping local communities with lifesaving Red Cross programs and services. We are truly grateful.”
The following awards were announced:
The Clara Barton Honor Award for Meritorious Volunteer Leadership recognizes meritorious service in leadership positions held over a period of years. Recipients are inducted into the Clara Barton Honor Society, the highest award that the American Red Cross bestows on volunteers. This year, the award was presented to Mr. William H. Coles, III. Over the years, Bill has held several leadership roles with the Red Cross, including Board Chair. He is a dedicated individual who understands the Red Cross mission and continues to devote his time and energy to helping others.
The Good Neighbor Awards are presented to local businesses or corporations that have provided significant, ongoing support to the Red Cross over a number of years. This year, the awards were presented to Just Born Quality Confections and Service Electric Cable TV and Communications, Inc.
Just Born Quality Confections is a Community Partner of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter, supporting the mission both financially and with in-kind support. Just Born employees and their families have volunteered in multiple roles, including serving on event planning committees, Board of Directors, staffing shelters during disasters and distributing holiday cards to veterans. Mr. Matthew Pye, VP Trade Relations and Corporate Affairs, accepted the award on behalf of Just Born.
In March 2013, Service Electric Cable TV and Communications, Inc. purchased the former home of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter. With extensive renovations underway, Service Electric graciously allowed the chapter to continue its’ operations through March 2014 at virtually no cost. Service Electric was extremely considerate of the chapters’ needs and the needs of the community for Red Cross services. Mr. Tim Himmelwright, Director of Communications, accepted the award on behalf of Service Electric.
The Special Citation for Exceptional Volunteer Service honors a volunteer whose performance over a period of several years has substantially exceed the volunteer’s original commitment to the American Red Cross. This year, the award was presented to Ms. April Chunko. April has been a Red Cross volunteer since 2010 and has devoted countless hours as a disaster action team member and creating and producing promotional videos to share the Red Cross mission with the community.
The Exceptional Partnership Award is a special award given to recognize the outstanding partnership of the American Red Cross and another organization. This year’s winner was The Executive Forum of the Lehigh Valley. For the last 4 years, during March, (National Red Cross Month), the Executive Forum of the Lehigh Valley has held an Endurance Race competition at the Lehigh Valley Grand Prix in Allentown to benefit the American Red Cross. This event, which promotes the mission of the Red Cross while acting as a great team building exercise for area businesses, has raised over $50,000 for crucial local Red Cross programs and services. Mr. Kenneth MacKenzie, Executive Forum President, accepted the award.