AF recognizes KMC volunteers for committment

Chief Master Sgt.
Audrey Thompson
435th Mission Support Squadron

***image1******image2***KMC volunteers were recognized for their commitment and selflessness during the KMC Air Force Volunteer of the Year Awards Celebration luncheon April 22 at the Ramstein Officers’ Club.
“Volunteering isn’t just nice, it’s necessary for the health of our society,” said the director of the Family Support Center, Glenda Alexander. “It bridges the gaps between people, programs and communities. Volun-teering is an investment in the community, and they have made our community a better place to live, work and play.”
Awards were presented by Brig. Gen. Rosanne Bailey, 435th Air Base Wing and KMC commander, and Col. Robert Kane, 86th Airlift Wing commander, to the winners in five categories: “Outstanding Volunteer of the Year,” “Exceptional Youth Volunteer of the Year,” “Volunteer Excellence Award,” “Outstanding Active Duty Group for Volunteer Support” and “Outstanding Volunteer Organization of the Year.”
This year’s 12 winners for Outstanding Volunteer of the Year are:
• Connie Allison served as the chairperson for the largest Girl Scout neighborhood in Europe, and she also volunteered at KMC schools and in her church.  
• Amy Ikari donated her time in 17 community areas from troop and facility support to tutoring Soldiers and providing administrative assistance with the Ramstein and U.S. Special Operations Command, Pacific.
• Nicole Krebs volunteered her time to the Sembach community by planning family events, serving as president of the Sembach Enlisted Spouses Club, volunteering at the thrift shop and caring for deployed Soldiers assigned to Sembach.
• Staff Sgt. Jimmy Beniquez, 435th Logistics Readiness Squadron, spent time mentoring students. Sergeant Beniquez served as last summer’s American Red Cross Youth Program liaison, a Special Olympic buddy, Project Cheer organizer and post office volunteer
• Colleen Klaver provided a safe haven for children on behalf of Emergency Placement Care Program. She also donated time to the key spouse program and the Sembach Combined Club.
• Master Sgt. Carlos Okey, with the U.S. Air Forces in Europe Kisling NCO Academy, was involved in several projects with the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Ramstein Officers’ Spouses Club, Fisher House, Youth Sports Program, the Health and Wellness Center and the Boy Scouts.
• Master Sgt. Dionna Smith, 435th ABW, volunteered time for professional organizations, KMC schools, Girl Scouts and outside events such as Women’s History Month and the 2003 Presidential Drug Education for Youth Multicultural Celebration.
• Staff Sgt. Edward Burke, 86th Operation Support Squadron, assisted with Special Olympics, the Ramstein Welfare Bazaar, Sunday school, Girl Scouts and various school events.
• Amber Demotts helped the KMC community by volunteering for various patient projects at LRMC and helping families staying at the Fisher House.
• Airman 1st Class Rachel Underwood, 435th Communica-tions Squadron, led special projects as the chairperson of her unit’s booster club, donated evenings as an Airman Against Drunk Driving volunteer, headed up a school tutoring program and served as a cheerleading coach.
• Senior Airman Stephanie Hamm, 735th Civil Engineer Squadron, was the president of Airman Against Drunk Driving. She also donated time as the Kinder Graves coordinator, Special Olym-pics buddy and a math tutor.
• Michelle “MiMi” Wilcox served as the chairperson for the Ramstein Welfare Bazaar. She also volunteered in the KMC schools and her church.
The “Volunteer Excellence Award” was presented to three individuals whose volunteer service was of a sustained, direct and consequential nature, and produced tangible results reflecting favorably on the Air Force. Recipients of the award received a certificate signed by the Air Force chief of staff and a special pin.
• Bill Humphreys volunteered for 29 years for the St. Alban’s Church community on Kapaun. His work in administration and visitation enabled St. Alban’s to be a positive presence in the KMC.
• Bill Jung gave more than 15 years of service to the Ramstein General Protestant Community. His efforts laid the foundation for the Northside Chapel Protestant Advi-sory Council, which contributed to a 75 percent increase in chapel volunteers.
• Jeanie Veith has been an American Red Cross volunteer for 36 years. Her efforts made adoption information available for Americans stationed overseas. Mrs. Veith also facilitated an adoption support group, provided pregnancy decision-making counseling and assisted with translation services for Special Olympics.
Three Exceptional Youth Volun-teer of the Year Award winners were recognized for their outstanding student leadership. Each winner was presented a savings bond and certificate.
• Tabetha Allison was a program aide for a Brownie Troop as well as a volunteer for her school, church and local community center.
• Amber Barton was an American Red Cross volunteer who gave numerous hours of administrative assistance to the youth programs.
• Jessica Johnson was also an American Red Cross volunteer and who donated more than 1,000 hours to the Ramstein Education office.
The 2003 – 2004 Outstanding Active Duty Group for Volunteer Support Award was presented to the USAFE Kisling NCO Officer Academy. Despite a rigorous 48 week schedule, the Kisling staff generously gave time and effort to a variety of causes: The National Bone Marrow Donor Program, Operation Iraqi Freedom, the 2003 Adoption Symposium, the Fisher House, Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps Summer Leadership Course, American Red Cross, Boy and Girl Scouts and youth sports.
This year’s Outstanding Volunteer Organization of the Year Award was given to the Ramstein Officers Spouses Club. The club sponsored the 2003 Ramstein Welfare Bazaar, which was the biggest money making bazaar in Europe. The proceeds were $280,000, and 100 percent of it was given back to the community. Besides the time and effort given to the bazaar, more than 250 volunteers gave more than 12,000 hours to other volunteer agencies.
For more information on volunteer opportunities in the KMC, call the Ramstein Family Support Center at 480-5100 or 06371-47-5100.