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American Red Cross Salutes Local Volunteers

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The American Red Cross, Southern Tier Chapter, hosted its annual Volunteer Recognition Dinner, Wednesday, saluting local volunteers for their service to the community.

Since 2016, local Red Cross volunteers contributed 65,000 hours of service toward helping their fellow man in the Southern Tier. But tonight's dinner, at The Links of Hiawatha Landing, was all about the men and women that provided disaster relief and health and safety services for Broome, Chenango, Tioga and Tompkins County. 

"Volunteers are about 90% of our workforce. They work day in and day out...all year long. They are so committed to the mission of helping their community. We're happy to honor them tonight," said Colleen McCabe, Red Cross's Southern Tier Chapter Executive Director.

In addition to recognizing volunteers for their dedication, the following awards were presented to the individual or organization that went above and beyond their duties as a Red Cross Volunteer:

  • Disaster Preparedness Award & Response Services Volunteer Award - Carol Withlow                                                                                          For demonstrating exceptional initiative in providing a measurable impact on the American Red Cross, the community and clients.
  • Good Neighbors Awards - Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit (TCAT) and Raymond Corporation                                                                      For making a significant humanitarian contribution to the local, national or international support of the Red Cross.
  • Youth Volunteer Award - Ithaca Red Cross Club                                                                                                                                                      For significant volunteer contributions by youth to their communities and the Red Cross.
  • Blood Services Volunteer Award - Mary Frate                                                                                                                                                          For outstanding performance in contributing to the Red Cross Blood Services program and fulfilling position requirements.
  • Fund Development Volunteer Award - Florence Doller                                                                                                                                            For demonstrating exceptional leadership in fundraising.
  • Administration Award - Lynn Augenstern                                                                                                                                                             For providing outstanding administrative support.
  • Disaster Preparedness & Response Services Volunteer Award - Peter Zelno                                                                                                        For making a measurable impact on the Red Cross, the community and clients. Demonstrating exceptional initiative in identifying and meeting Disaster Preparedness and Response.
  • Clara Barton Volunteer Leadership Award - Stephanie Blodgett                                                                                                                              For providing personal expertise that enable the Red Cross to contribute services, providing constructive guidance of assignments and cooperating with others in implementing solutions in a resourceful and productive manner.

One honoree, Sis Johnson, was recognized at the dinner for her 50 years of service to the Southern Tier. She said her job for the Red Cross was mobilizing military personnel, transporting and aiding veterans, and their families, in times of need.

"I used to take service men home or bring them to their base when something happened to them. I wish I could have done more, but there was nothing that you could do. I tried to be supportive as much as I could for them," said Sis Johnson.  

According to Sis, although there were many instances helping her community that she will remember throughout her lifetime, the 50 years she has spent working with the Red Cross still isn't enough for her.

"I love the [Red Cross]. I wish I could live longer and do more," said Sis Johnson.

If anyone is interested in volunteering and joining the American Red Cross family, visit their website or call the Southern Tier Chapter at (607) 785-7207.

Red Cross workers are currently providing support to hurricane disaster areas, to help people affected by Hurricane Harvey click here to discover how you can donate toward relief efforts.