Making a Difference

Residents Honored at Annual Recognition Awards Breakfast

What do 13 individuals and one Chandler business have in common? They were all recently honored at Chandler's annual Volunteer Recognition Breakfast, held at Chandler Center for the Arts.

The City of Chandler’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Division joined with the nonprofit For Our City-Chandler to recognize the contributions of time and dedication made each day by committed volunteers.

“There is no better gift than the gift of time,” says Mayor Kevin Hartke. “This recognition awards program allows Chandler to single out and honor those who selflessly give us their valuable time to make our City a better place for our residents. Each person honored strongly believes in giving back to the community.”

Organizations, including those that are faith-based, nonprofits, and schools that rely on volunteers, were all encouraged to nominate individuals with service primarily in Chandler. 

The award recipients included:

  • Innovation Award: Felisa Gilley
    Volunteers with: AZCEND
  • Longevity Award: Roger Hyles
    Volunteers with: Chandler Police Department
  • Makes It Happen Award: Cindy Ratliff
    Volunteers with: Arizona College Prep Middle School, Paz de Cristo, Feed My Starving Children, Hackett House, Phoenix Children's Hospital, Treasures 4 Teachers, Special Olympics, Operation Gratitude, Children's Cancer Network, Childsplay Theater
  • Mayor’s Choice Award: Melissa Sutton (This award is not subject to nomination, but instead is selected by Chandler Mayor Kevin Hartke)
    Volunteers with: Drowning Prevention Coalition of Arizona, National Drowning Prevention Alliance, PTO for Aprende Middle School, Child Fatality Review Team, and others
  • Multitasking Maestro Award: Dr. Sakina Raza
    Volunteers with: American Muslim Women's Association of Arizona (AMWA-AZ), ICNA Relief Arizona, Islamic Center of Northeast Valley, 100 Angels, YMCA Scottsdale, IRC Welcome Center for Asylum Seekers
  • Strong Arms Award: Mike Amato
    Volunteers with: Neighbors Who Care (NWC)
  • Sunbeam Award: Okechukwu (Oke) Ogba
    Volunteers with: Frye Elementary PTO
  • Working Together Award: Edwards Vacuum
    Volunteers with: For Our City-Chandler
  • Youth Award: Daniel Johnson
    Volunteers with: Life Link Church, Perry High School - Sparrow Club, LEO Club, Student Council Boy Scouts of America Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP), American Heart Association

During the event, five people were also inducted into the 1,000 Hour Club for serving more than 1,000 hours of volunteer work to Chandler organizations. Chandler City Lifestyle would like to give a special shout out to one of our magazine partners, Mindy Jones with the Amy Jones Group for being one of those recognized! The others inducted were Rhea Dias, Ross Lemire, Karen Thompson, and Joseph Yang.

Congratulations to all of those who were honored and who selflessly volunteered their time and talents to make our city better!

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