And the winner is…

…a secret!

At least until they are announced at our Keeping Dreams Alive luncheon on Wednesday, May 9!  There is still time to sign up to attend this inspiring event and meet the nominees who helped us build a stronger community in 2017 and beyond.

We welcome you to join us–and help us honor and thank several of our many amazing volunteers.

These are just a sampling of people who made a difference in the lives of our community neighbors in the following ways:

Made an impact in their community

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Site Coordinators go above and beyond to make sure that low- and moderate-income taxpayers receive high-quality tax prep services free of charge. During the 2018 tax season we had some amazing individuals in that role: Dawn Ault, Monyneath Phy (first year), Michele Johnson (10+ years), Sherri Gordon (20+ years), and Norman Brickhouse who served more than 1,000 people in the last year at Goodwill, our busiest tax site, including post-season tax help through October 2017.

They make an impact on the community by helping low and moderate-income taxpayers and seniors, saving them the average $300 fee that American households spend on tax prep, and helping them get as full a refund as possible. All this to make sure these tax payers become more stable and achieve their goals.

Gave 110% to their cause

AM has been fortunate to have two long-time volunteers coming into the office, Sherry Bernklau and Tony Lewis, who have given beyond 110% to AM!

Sherry Bernklau volunteered in the AM Representative Payee Office for a total of 1,840 hours. As a longtime volunteer, she was involved in helping other volunteers learn the ropes. Later she was involved in the the implementation of a new database system for Associated Ministries.

Sherry has deep insight and great empathy for the clients served in the Representative Payee Office and other programs at AM.  She stands as a role model and a sign of hope to clients. Sherry’s significant gifts in technology and her compassion for people who are vulnerable make her volunteer work with us invaluable.  

Tony Lewis has been coming into the office for 40 hours a week for over a year, has given an extraordinary 1,442 hours to date, and is still volunteering every day each week for 8 hours a day.

He believes in the mission and work he is doing for AM and is committed to helping in any way possible.  Tony has taken on two different projects working with the Database/QA Manager in fulfilling various information system strategic initiatives set by AM Management. Tony has been a vital key to developing the new Landlord Liaison Project Program. 

Opened their hearts, used their voices or lent their muscle to make a difference

We are thankful for the dedication of some our key Paint Tacoma-Pierce Beautiful (PTPB) volunteers. They provide the back-end support that makes PTB possible. They helped us identify and select projects, supported new volunteers, and lent their expertise and insights to improve the program.

Our unending gratitude goes to Marty Cheek, Matt Edwards, John Herem, Rikki McGee, Jim Ofelt, and Roy Kilgore. These volunteers helped us in numerous ways: assessing houses to evaluate their need for painting, helping us select houses for paint projects; evaluating the program and helping us to improve services. Sometimes they led paint crews and painted houses themselves.  By opening their hearts, using their voices and lending their muscle they made a difference for hundreds of low-income homeowners.

Inspired by example

Karin and Melinda worked tirelessly to create and present AM’s first Interfaith Women’s Conference. As a first-time event, the planning and “master-minding” was intense, time-consuming and required a lot of thinking “outside of the box.”  Not only did these two women put crazy hours into this project, they brought a perspective that was unique, honest and fresh.                                                                                        

They inspired us by the example of their working relationship–which turned into a friendship–showing how life-changing it is to take the time to meet someone from a faith outside your own.  Melinda and Karin come from two very different faith traditions.  They worked together, learned from one another, gained a respect for each other’s views, and forged a new friendship!  That is the power of interfaith dialogue!

We hope you will join us as we honor all our volunteers!        

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

11:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Temple Beth El

5975 S. 12th., Tacoma

The event is free, but an RSVP is required. Click here to register today!

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