The American Red Cross Capital Region Chapter - which includes Stanislaus County - thanked volunteers for their service at a recognition dinner held at the McHenry Museum in Modesto on Oct. 20. The event was an opportunity to say thank you for the thousands of combined hours donated by Stanislaus County volunteers. Special recognitions were awarded for excellence in the following categories:
• Community Outreach and Education, Filadelfo "Fito" Ruano
Ruano became a Red Cross volunteer 35 years ago as a teenager in his home country of El Salvador. Since then he has worked to ensure that the diverse Stanislaus community has access to emergency preparedness training and resources through presentations to service and faith-based organizations, businesses, schools and community events. He is fluent in Spanish and teaches emergency preparedness and response in communities that might not otherwise have access to the information.
• Community Partner, Kelly Services (Kelly Right Start Program)
In the past three years, Kelly Services Right Start Program has placed five advanced-skills interns with the Red Cross. Each team member has worked an average of 35 hours per week for approximately five to 10 months, which equates to having a full-time staff member providing invaluable support to the Red Cross.
• Youth Volunteer, Angel Guizar
Guizar has committed extensive time and training to become a valuable member of the First Aid Team for the past two years, working many of the Modesto Nuts games and committing more than 100 hours to do so. She is a Davis High School senior and is part of the Health Academy. Working with the Red Cross has given her training and leadership skills not available through most training avenues.
• Authorized Provider, Aquatic Dreams
As a partner in health education, Aquatic Dreams became the lead provider of Red Cross Lifeguard and Water Safety Instructor programs and went on to offer CPR / First Aid and Pet First Aid classes at their indoor aquatics facility. In addition, they are training to join the Red Cross team of volunteers to help with community outreach and education.
• Community Outreach Instructor, Lupita Zaragoza
Zaragoza started working with the Red Cross as a high school senior through Project Yes, a youth work-study program. Now a senior at CSU Stanislaus, she continues to volunteer to teach and educate the community, and is the site coordinator and bi-lingual instructor at the Oak Valley Hospital CPR Saturday location. For the past three years, she worked to prepare her team to teach nearly one hundred students each year.
• First Aid Team Members of the Year, Richard Borger, Robert Dickson, John Guerra and Thomas Wayne Johnson
First Aid Teams provide a valuable resource to the community by staffing events for non-profits, community organizations and businesses so when minor accidents, injuries or illness occur, immediate and quality first aid response is on-hand.
• Health and Safety Instructor of the Year, Jasmine Su
Su started volunteering with the Red Cross 13 years ago and is now an Instructor Trainer, teaching all levels of CPR and First Aid. For the past three years she's volunteered teaching multiple classes each month, including workplace and community courses.
• Health and Safety Volunteer of the Year, Dianna Borger
Borger serves as the Red Cross First Aid Team Coordinator and has donated more than 1,000 hours of service this past year. By encouraging her team members to take advanced levels of response training to become Professional Rescuers and/or EMT certified, many team members have been successful in finding employment thanks in part to their critical field training.
• Disaster Action Team Volunteer, Michael Duncan
Duncan's leadership, communication, logistical and disaster assessment skills make him a Red Cross Disaster Action Team leader who is highly respected by his peers and is committed to helping fire clients move forward in their recovery plan. He responds to emergency canteens, as well as local, regional and national disasters.
• Disaster Services Instructor, Katherine Andersen
Andersen has shown dedication and commitment to training new and continuing volunteers in Introduction to Red Cross, Disaster Services and International Humanitarian Law classes. She volunteers weekly in the local Red Cross office and teaches two to three classes every month. Additionally, she is active with disaster exercises and deploys regionally and nationally, using her leadership skills to help support other communities.
• Emergency Services Administrative Support, Joel Prins
Over the past 15 months, Prins has helped to collect and document all demographics and track expenditures for grant and National Red Cross reporting requirements. His attention to detail has been an invaluable addition to Red Cross Disaster Services and Service to the Armed Forces programs.
• Health Services, Alvina Rohner - As a bi-lingual Red Cross volunteer and registered nurse, Rohner has assisted at numerous local events, blood pressure clinics, H1N1 flu clinics, first aid teams and on national assignment as a nurse in disaster shelters.
• Service to the Armed Forces, John "Jack" Eramdjian
A Vietnam-era Army Veteran, Eramdjian makes sure that the Red Cross is present to honor, recognize and support our armed forces at parades, events, and at San Joaquin National Cemetery services and events. He is committed to honoring members of the armed forces, veterans and soldiers who have died.
• Emergency Services Volunteers of the Year
- Jan Campbell - Jan has made a personal commitment to mentor new Red Cross volunteers, and has developed an internal tracking systems to get new volunteers through the system and registered.
- Michael Campbell -Mike, a retired firefighter, likes order and always respects the need for safety. He has dedicated his time to Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT) safety, equipment organization, logistical coordination, DAT response and providing services to local and regional victims of disaster.
• Special Recognition - A special recognition plaque was handed out in memory of Barbara Ball, a dedicated Red Cross volunteer who served locally, regionally and national for 14 years. Ball passed away in June of this year.
• Stanislaus County Advisory Council, James C. Horning
Horning has been instrumental in the success of Red Cross events and actively recruits sponsors and donors for the annual Heroes Breakfast, CPR Saturday and Super Bowl Saturday raffle. He's committed to increasing awareness in the community and especially by potential donors. He currently serves on the regional Board of Directors as the Philanthropy Chair and has been successful in helping the board meet their personal giving goals.
• Volunteer of the Year, Bob Bradley
Over the past two years Bradley has helped on first aid teams, H1N1 clinics, canteens and disaster drills, and helps with vendor and shelter assessments and agreements. He is a Disaster Action Team lead and will always take a fire-response call. He oversees all vehicle maintenance and organizes Red Cross caroling visits to assisted living facilities, attends community outreach events, helps with military and community outreach events and always has suggestions about ways to keep Red Cross visible in the community.