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Local Red Cross Honors Volunteers

philadelphia volunteers
Volunteers are essential to our work. In our region in the past year, the American Red Cross responded to 685 disasters, including home fires, floods and building collapses.

On September 12, 2013, the American Red Cross of Southeastern Pennsylvania (SEPA) celebrated its most important resource: volunteers. In a ballroom at the Philadelphia Hilton, some 400 people shared a meal to recognize the contributions of extraordinarily generous people in Philadelphia and the surrounding counties. This banquet is held every year to honor and present awards to Red Cross volunteers and partners who devote their time to help and support others in need.

The evening was hosted by SEPA CEO, Judge Reneé Cardwell Hughes and local ABC news broadcaster Alicia Vitarelli, herself a daughter and sister of fire fighters. As the celebration occurred on September 12th, Judge Hughes made a point to recognize how many volunteers had come to be a part of the Red Cross in the wake of the September 11th attacks, noting that their commitment showed the generosity of the American spirit. Other speakers included, Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers and longtime SEPA board member, Tom Hays who presented the Chapter Wide Awards to our most devoted volunteers. The American Red Cross Southeastern Pennsylvania also recognized board member Teresa Bryce Bazemore of Radian who is serving for the first year as chair of the Celebration of Volunteers Committee. Former Chair Karen Martin was honored for her years serving the committee and event.

This year, our volunteers were involved in several high profile events. Many were deployed to regions all over the country to assist in the wake of wildfires, hurricanes, flooding, tornadoes and even a terror attack. Others assisted New York and New Jersey residents in the wake of Superstorm Sandy or helped set up shelters in our region to assist residents affected by the storm.

In our local region, well trained Disaster Action Team volunteers worked tirelessly in each county to make sure residents received care and assistance when disaster struck. These people are essential to our work. In our region in the past year, the American Red Cross responded to 685 disasters, including home fires, floods and building collapses. We helped more than 1,100 Southeastern Pennsylvania families recover and rebuild. The commitment of these volunteers makes it possible to help people affected by disaster at a moment’s notice. Our volunteers literally answer the call, sometimes in the middle of the night, to be there for others.

Here is the list of honorees from this year’s Celebration of Volunteers banquet:

Exceptional Volunteer Awards

Communications Department: Sarah Peterson

Financial Development: Dianne Blomer

Health & Safety: Jon Dilks

Red Cross House: Robert Brown

Service to Armed Forces: Janice Winston

Volunteer Services: Johnnie Berry Lee

Youth Services: Ebony Powell

Emergency Services: Disaster Action Team Awards

Lower Bucks County: Kay Rossi

Upper Bucks County: Stanley Dunn

Delaware County: Catherine La Fleur

Eastern Montgomery County: Edmund Nelson

Western Montgomery County: Edward Kershner

Philadelphia County: Danelle Stoppel

Emergency Communications: Mark Klimp

Specialty Teams: Sue Halfond

Outstanding Captain of the Year: Natalie Watterworth

Chapter Awards

The Betty Robinson Award: Christopher T. Gheysens

The Sam & Dotty Kind Award: Janice Winston

The Jane Bisbee Award: Leon A. LaRosa, Jr.

Related Links:

Photo Gallery

CAPA National Anthem

CAPA Sorrida Performance

Year-End Video

Volunteer Slideshow