During a fall afternoon overlooking Lake Chautauqua, the RSVP south county volunteers gathered at the Lakewood Rod and Gun Club to be honored for their service.
The Chautauqua Region Community Foundation was the major sponsor for the event. Chautauqua County RSVP staff and Advisory Council members were on hand to publicly thank those dedicated volunteers in attendance. A luncheon was served preceded by special addresses from Tom Holt, Lutheran president and chief executive officer. Lutheran has been Chautauqua County RSVP's sponsor since 1975. Also speaking were state Assemblyman Andrew Goodell, R-Chautauqua County; state Senator Cathy Young, R-C-I-Olean, and County Executive Gregory Edwards.
Since 2005, 57 Chautauqua County RSVP volunteers have achieved the Presidential Volunteer Lifetime Service Award. To be eligible, one must serve in excess of 4,000 hours during one's lifetime with an accredited agency. The 4,000 hours of service is equivalent to serving two years full-time working 40 hours per week. Beverly Prince, Blanche Hodges, Dennis Anderson, Ed Yager, Esther Horton, Harold P. Johnson, Mary L. Moore, Nancy Sinatra and Robert Ortendahl all achieved this distinction and received Letters of Commendation from President Barack Obama, Sen. Young, Goodell and Edwards.
Seated, from left, are Bev Lubi of the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation and Brenda Weiler, RSVP project coordinator. Standing, from left, are Bonnie Engberg, Irene Moll, Mary Ellen Smith, Marna Wolaver and Christine Jones.
Others achieving significant years of service are: Joyce VanRensselaer - 25 years; Ken Kilburn - 24 years;
Carol Cole and Marjorie Alessi - 22 years, Virgina Lind and Emily Warner - 20 years;
Shirley Vandenburg, Shirley Ewer, and Dona Williams - 15 years;
Diane Adams, Susan Hedberg, Donald and Helen Kleckner, Margaret Miller, Corrine Morley, Hazel Porter, Joyce Rhinehart, Ed Thomas, and Margaret Walters - 10 years;
Robert Clark, Norm and Paula Czubaj Cora Delahoy, Robert Delahoy Randy Hinsdale, Joan Hult, Stephen Kiendl, James Kolenda, Ellen Lord, Melvin Lord, Judith Mulkearn, Caryl Pickup, Mildred Roach, Patricia Saulsgiver, Betty Steverson, Wayne Tanner, Madelyn Wellington, Nancy Whitelaw, Sandra Whitford, and Barbara Wigley - five years.
In addition to the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, sponsors included Fessenden-Laumer-DeAngelo, Lind Funeral Home, Mayville Library, Community Helping Hands, Downtown Jamestown Development Corporation, North Harmony Senior Citizens, Fenton Historical Society, Andrea Benedett - Chautauqua Lake Central School, St. Paul's Food Pantry, Hultquist Place, Dunkirk-Fredonia Meals on Wheels, Jamestown Area Meals on Wheels, Fredonia Beaver Club, Center for Resolution and Justice, Joint Neighborhood Project, CARTS, Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame, The Basket Company, Wegman's, Senior Citizens of Dunkirk, Chautauqua PT/OT, WCA Employee Care & Share Fund, Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau, American Cancer Society, St. James Thrift Store, Anderson Cleaners, Roger Tory Peterson Institute, Fluvanna Library, Ripley Food Pantry, Lakewood Library, Chautauqua Adult Day Care, and Jamestown Area Senior Center.
For more information, call RSVP at 665-3038 and ask for Brenda Weiler. RSVP is a Senior Corps project governed by the Corporation for National & Community Service and sponsored locally by Lutheran. It is paid for by New York state and Chautauqua County Offices for the Aging. RSVP is a United Way agency.