Area volunteers, including District honorees, were recognized June 17 with a 2014 Governor’s Volunteer Award.
More than 140 eastern Iowa individuals and groups were recognized with a 2014 Governor’s Volunteer Award during a special recognition ceremony held June 17. The awards were presented by Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds. Recipients included Anita Heaverlo, 2014 Outstanding Cedar Rapids Community School District Volunteer, and the Cedar Rapids PTA Council, also nominated for the recognition by the school district.
“It’s always a great pleasure for me to honor and recognize the volunteers who accomplish extraordinary things through service to help their communities, fellow citizens, and the great state of Iowa,” said Governor Branstad. “These dedicated volunteers lead by example—not only encouraging the people they help, but motivating others to serve as well. I sincerely thank them all for their dedication and efforts.”
“The Governor and I are strong believers that our community volunteers, charitable nonprofits, and faith-based institutions are often best equipped to provide long-term solutions to the challenges we face,” said Lt. Governor Reynolds. “Some of our most promising and cost-effective solutions to literacy, disaster response, drop-out prevention, and community development are fueled by tapping into our best assets—our people and our volunteer spirit.”
The Governor’s Volunteer Awards (GVA) program was created in 1982, with inaugural awards presented in 1983. What began as a small program for state government agencies, has expanded over the years and now provides all Iowa nonprofit, charitable, and government organizations with an easy way to honor their volunteers with a prestigious state-level award. Hundreds of volunteers are recognized each year with awards in one of four categories: Individual, Group, Length of Service or Disaster Volunteer.
Award criteria include an individual or group who has:
- Demonstrated exceptional commitment to volunteerism by helping with a special project or ongoing activities
- Demonstrated exemplary leadership, creativity, cooperation and hard work in their service to others
- Made an outstanding contribution to state or community through volunteer service.
The Governor’s Volunteer Award program is coordinated by the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service and the Governor’s Office with ceremonies across the state. Over 600 awards were presented this year. The Cedar Rapids event is organized by members of the Leaders In Volunteerism organization, and District Community Relations Supervisor Marcia Hughes serves as emcee.
“Iowa volunteers annually share 80 million hours of their time in support of others,” Hughes noted. “These individuals have many different life experiences but they all have one thing in common - their willingness to share their time on behalf of others. It is an honor to recognize such tremendous people.”