City of Richmond Thanks Community Volunteers

Mieasha Harris executive director of Girls Inc. West Contra Costa County with Board Vice President Vicki Winston holding her Meritorious Service Award in Education at the 2nd Annual Volunteer Recognition and Awards Ceremony at the Richmond Memorial Auditorium.

By Carla Thomas Mayor Gayle McLaughlin, Richmond Community Foundation, and Richmond ESC, “Excellence Serving Our Community,” hosted the 2nd Annual Volunteer Recognition and Awards Ceremony in celebration of National Volunteer Week last Thursday at the Richmond Memorial Auditorium. The event honored the outstanding volunteers, organizations, and companies that promote positive change in the community and nearly 50 volunteers and community members told their stories of how they saw a need in the community and found a way to fix it, often with little or no resources. Retired educator Vicki Winston, who  has volunteered with Girls Inc. of the West Contra Costa County for nearly a year, deeply impressed the organization’s executive director, Mieasha Harris. “I didn’t’ even know Mieasha nominated me,” said a surprised Vicki Winston. “Vicki has worked tirelessly at Girls Inc. West Contra Costa County as our vice president.  She really loves our girls and is a great volunteer,” said Girls Inc.’s Program Director Tiffany Harris. According to Harris, Winston has spend over 1,000 hours phone calling, emailing, and letter writing to help  organize the group´s end of year celebration honoring graduates of the College Bound Girls program. Forty-eight volunteers received awards, more than doubling last year’s awardees. Meritorious Service Awards were presented to three board members of LifeLong and Brookside Medical Services. Robbie Hurtado, D.L. Poole and John Marquez were recognized in the Health and Wellness category, along with Anthony Bryant, Donny Davis, Lisa Duncan, Johnny Holmes, Garry Hurlbut, Gail Garrett, Bruce Greenlee, Tracy Taylor, Dr. Tony Sillemon and Eric White. Additional Meritorious Service Awards were presented to Kate Sibley, Faye Young, and the Masquers Playhouse for The Arts, Joey Aduviso, Edwin Bolds, Paul W. Hirsh, Shanying Lee, Pedro Lespier, Sharon May, Ryan McQuiston, Patricia Mendoza, Rebecca Newburn, Vicki Winston, Northland Nautical Foundation, and the Read-Aloud Volunteer Program for Education and Antonia Vanoni, Herbert Warren, and Richmond Trees for Community Beautification. In the category of Community Health and Wellness honorees included Eric Marisela Aguiniga, Wayne Farinas, Jane Fischberg, Sandi Genser-Maack, Ron Gibson, Daryl Henline, Janet Johnson, Jan Mignone, and Pamela Wimberly, recognized for Excellence in Community Service.  Antwon Clorid was recognized for Public Safety. Distinguished Service Awards were presented to Mike Mahoney for Education, Hanka Boudreau for Art and Teonna Thompson for Youth.  The Richmond CERT Citizens Advisory Panel on Emergency Readiness and Response was recognized for Public Safety, Dr. Desmond Carson for Health and Wellness, the Richmond Commission on Aging For Excellence in Community and Andromeda Brooks – Happy Lot Farm and Garden for Community Beautification. Other featured organizations included Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bay Area, Black Women Organized for Political Action/Latina Center, Bring Me a Book, Richmond Main Street Initiative, Richmond Trees and Writer Coach Connection. “It takes volunteers and dedicated people to make a city a community, and the efforts of those honored today are well deserved,” said community activist Jerrold Hatchett. For more information visit:
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