40th Annual Presentation of the Hon Kachina Volunteer Awards Honors Six Arizona Volunteers

Posted on Monday, March 13th, 2017

PHOENIX (March 7, 2017) – The Hon Kachina Council is excited to announce the six recipients to be honored at this year’s Hon Kachina Volunteer Awards on May 20, 2017, at the JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn: Julie Frisoni Shumway, Sherry Kiyler, Barry McBride, Amanda Moore, Francisco Orozco, and Lanette Veres. These six volunteers were chosen from nearly 100 nominations for volunteers from nonprofits throughout the state. This year marks Hon Kachina’s 40th year promoting and celebrating volunteerism in the State of Arizona. The volunteers being honored will receive a one-of-a-kind hand carved Hon Kachina doll and a cash award for their nonprofit organization.

To be chosen as an honoree, each nominated individual was carefully screened by a selection committee, which then chose 15 finalists who were then interviewed. A prestigious Board of Governors and the Hon Kachina Council Selection Committee, comprised of prominent business and civic leaders, selected the honorees.

“We are ecstatic to be celebrating 40 years of volunteerism with this great group of six honorees,” said Hon Kachina Council President, Chris Gladney. “It is humbling to hear what these volunteers do to make Arizona a better place to live. Thank you to all the very worthy volunteers nominated. You are all doing truly amazing work.”

In the months leading up to the event, honorees will be featured on AZTV’s “Arizona Daily Mix”, weekdays at 8am. Tune in to find out more about each of the honorees’ stories.

Since 1977, more than 400 volunteers have been honored for their dedication to causes that include health care, neighborhood revitalization, youth and senior activities, the arts, education, justice, housing, nutrition or social services. Many have given what they can at great personal sacrifice.

This year’s honorees in alphabetical order are:
Julie Frisoni Shumway

Over the past twenty-seven years Julie Frisoni Shumway has dedicated thousands of hours to New Pathways for Youth. Julie has been a mentor, a friend, and a support to hundreds of youth, and has helped New Pathways continue their mission of support to the local communities. When Julie first got involved there were 5 volunteers, including the CEO. It was that small group that built the organization foundation and programs that help so many youth today. Over five hundred youth now participate with New Pathways on a yearly basis, many of whom wouldn’t make it past their freshman year in high school if not for the support, continued education, and friendship that is built in the program. Without Julie’s consistent involvement, advocacy, and dedication, New Pathways would probably not exist today.

Sherry Kiyler

With only two other volunteers, Sherry started the unheard of (until then) Family Liaison Program at the Phoenix Police Department. Over her career, the FLP has grown in close partnership with Parents of Murdered Children and has had over 300 volunteers pass through its doors. Over the years of its existence, the FLP has helped hundreds of Phoenix families suffering loss as the result of violent crime in the city. Sherry also serves an integral role for the Special Olympics, both locally and nationally. Starting her service with Special Olympics in the late 90’s, and directly due to her influence, the local chapter has raised over one million dollars for 2 of the last 3 years. Sherry has volunteered hundreds of hours with the Arizona Special Olympics for the past eight years. Sherry also volunteers with ICAN (Improving Chandler Area Neighborhoods), a program targeting at-risk youth in the Chandler area.

Barry McBride

Barry McBride has been a volunteer at Canyon State Academy for over 32 years, where he teaches ethics to the youth. He spends weeknights preparing lessons he will teach at the Academy on Sundays. On Saturday evenings, he commits his notes to memory. Barry serves on multiple boards including CSA (Christian Service Awards), he is the founding member of The Charter School Board, served as a volunteer at St. Mary’s Food Bank and ran the “Kids Café” which is an after-school food program to provide children with meals since many underprivileged children do not receive regular meals at home.

Amanda Moore

Amanda Moore is the Founder and Equus Coach of Reigning Grace Ranch, home to 45 mended horses that help heal and empower children and families struggling with adversity. The Ranch serves children with mental, physical, emotional, and functional needs, but most of all provides children with an authentic and safe place to discover their true potential. Amanda has dedicated all her time and energy to the horses, children, and volunteers that make up Reigning Grace Ranch since opening it in 2009.

Francisco Orozco

Francisco “Frankie” has been volunteering at SARSEF since he was 16 years old. When he was in high school, he won the Arizona State Science Fair and received a significant college scholarship, making Frankie the first in his family to go to college. He has since dedicated his life and service to helping kids like him. He has helped and inspired thousands of K-12 students by encouraging them to participate in science and to ignite interest in underprivileged children to study STEM areas. Frankie has taken his volunteer work to another level and SARSEF said they owe their success and upward movement all to Frankie. Without him, the organization would not be where it is today.

Lanette Veres

After being diagnosed with a brain tumor in 1998, Lanette founded the Gray Matters Foundation to help patients cope emotionally. Her and her cadre of 50 volunteers help guide patients and their families through the web of hospital visits, surgeries, and the emotional ups and downs – and bring joy and hope in a time of stress. From her beginnings volunteering as a facilitator at the Barrow Brain Tumor Support group to now answering international calls at 4am from patients needing help (from over 30 countries), Lanette has always worked tirelessly – from simple gestures like handwritten cards and stickers to full design and decoration of patient rooms, every patient and family that Gray Matters touches feels that there is someone who cares and believes in them. To date, that number of lives touched reaches into the thousands.

About Hon Kachina Council:
The Hon Kachina Council, affiliated with Vitalyst, is a group of servant leaders from the Valley professional community that promotes volunteerism by recognizing ordinary individuals doing extraordinary things, celebrating them and presenting them as an example to motivate others to volunteer. The Hon Kachina Council can be found online at honkachina.org, on Twitter at twitter.com/#!/HonKachina and via LinkedIn.


2017 Hon Kachina Volunteer Awards Event

Posted on Sunday, March 12th, 2017

2017 Hon Kachina Volunteer Awards Event

Saturday, May 20, 2017

JW Marriott Camelback Inn Resort and Spa

 

click here for event details


KIRK BAXTER

Posted on Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Kirk Baxter, Phoenix, Phoenix Body Positive  |  HIV/AIDS  |  HEAL International

Kirk’s activism began with the first years of Phoenix Pride and as a board member of both Equality Arizona and the National Gay Task Force. More recently, Kirk has had the honor of working on heartfelt projects to eradicate poverty and homelessness  with the Ramsey Social Justice Foundation.” Presently, Kirk serves as the President of the Board for HEAL International. Kirk Baxter founded Phoenix Body Positive, now the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS, to focus on prevention and education, nutrition and wellness, counseling, and research. Thousands of clients have been tested and assisted down the road of treatment. People who had no access to peer-based advocacy, alternative therapies and mutual support now found help through Kirk Baxter. Through fundraising for Aunt Ritaʼs Foundation as co-chair for the Red Brunch and co-chair of AIDS Walk Phoenix, Kirk has raised money for multiple AIDS organizations in Arizona.


MARGARET BORTNER

Posted on Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Dr. Margaret Bortner, Phoenix, Federal Bureau of Prisons

Dr. Peg Bortner has dedicated 17 years of volunteering to educating women that are currently incarcerated in the Federal Bureau of Prisons in Phoenix, Arizona. Her volunteering includes assisting women with enrolling in distance learning programs through ASU and Rio Salado, teaching weekly classes and seminars, proctoring exams so that the women can obtain and or continue their education while serving their sentences. With Dr. Bortner’s dedication and time, she has grown the educational opportunities for the women in prison, helping hundreds of women achieve their dreams.


JASON BURNS

Posted on Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Jason Burns, Prescott Valley, MATFORCE

Jason Burns volunteers as a community speaker for MATFORCE, a coalition of community partners whose goal is to reduce substance abuse in Yavapai County. Jason, who is mentally and physically disabled from a drunk-driving accident in 2002, shares his story with children and young adults throughout Northern Arizona, a story that on one hand is tragic and full of regret, but also uplifting and powerful.