Westlake celebrates volunteers' service to community
Westlake took part in National Volunteer Week (April 15-21) by honoring local volunteers at a recognition reception held at City Hall on April 19. The ceremony paid tribute to over 50 volunteers for their service to the city of Westlake throughout the past year.
President Richard Nixon created the first National Volunteer Week in 1974 to recognize, inspire and encourage people of all ages to seek out creative ways to get involved in their communities. The Westlake honorees were among the 63 million people who volunteered this year throughout the nation that embodied the energy and power that citizens can bring to their communities.
Community Services Director Joyce Schroth lauded the honorees for their volunteerism, saying, "When we see projects that need to get done, you see opportunities. When we see challenges, you see character-building. When we see difficult situations, you see ways to be creative. You see that helping others and making connections brings us closer as community members, neighbors and families and we thank you. As we recognize those in attendance this evening we pause and reflect on all that you have done and join you in recognizing that volunteering is at the very heart of a healthy community."
Before presenting each of the volunteers with a proclamation of appreciation, Mayor Dennis Clough commended their service to the city.
"We're blessed to have so many people like yourselves who are willing to give back to this community, to make it better than it ever was and to continue to make it a desirable community," Clough said. "Where everyone enjoys the environment that we have, the people that we have in this community and service that were able to provide. We could not provide the quality services without our help. You believe in this community, you believe in giving back and helping others, and that really is the true spirit of being a volunteer."
Three citizens, Sue Veber, Dave Pfister and Lysa Stanton also received a gold Presidential Volunteer Service Award. The Presidential Volunteer Service Award is similar to the Olympics in that there are awards for bronze, silver, gold and lifetime. These volunteers qualified for the gold award, by accumulating 500 hours in service to the city.
Veber has been a stalwart volunteer for the Westlake Assistance Program as well as serving on the Community Services Advisory Board of which she is currently president.
Pfister and Stanton have contributed many hours to the city of Westlake over the past year, individually and on behalf of the Westlake Historical Society.