SFC News

'Celebrating our Essential Pieces,' the 39th annual volunteer recognition at Senior Friendship Centers, honored the volunteers who have been the cornerstone of this organization its inception in 1973.

Since that time volunteers have given 1,240,257 hours valued at $31,114,049.

This year also inaugurated the Founders Award, honoring the late Brother William Geenen, CSC ,and Molleen Pust, whose vision and dedication created this non-profit organization. Their belief in the philosophy of “people helping people” through volunteerism, has continued to improve the quality of life and health of seniors in our community for nearly four decades. Molleen was present at the volunteer recognition to honor the first recipient of the award, Rich Nicoli,  for his compassion and dedication to helping others through the Caregiver Resource Center and in other areas of the organization. He was selected  from a field of many outstanding volunteers, and among the  twelve individuals were nominated to  receive ‘People Helping People’ Awards:

  • Liz Barrett, Operations
  • Steve Bruegger, Volunteer Services
  • Peggy Cobb, Nutrition Services
  • Henrietta Daytz, Communications
  • Lee Escalera, Senior Center
  • Martin Galea, Social Services
  • Grace Goldstein, Center for Healthy Aging
  • Ann Hartka, Compeer
  • Edward Herrod, DDS, Center for Healthy Aging
  • Betty Pritz, Balance Movement
  • Richard Nicoli, Caregiver Resource Center
  • Dolly Zirbel, Nutrition Services

Also honored during the festivities were Volunteers Giving 250 hours or more:

  • Anne Berna. 267
  • Socrates Birsky, 354
  • Mary Eberle, 290.5
  • Lee Escalera, 267
  • Jeremiah Hendricks, 328
  • Joey Hendricks, 398
  • Edwards Herrod, DDS, 377
  • David MacMillan, MD, 377.5
  • Richard Nicoli, 361
  • Lana Nusbaum, MD, 304
  • Maggie Rebello, 321.75
  • Albert Resnick, MD, 266
  • David Sewell, MD 327
  • Dolories Schiffer, 273.5
  • Richard Schumacher.399
  • John White, 299.25

Volunteers contributing 400 hours or more:

  • Teresa Emery, 595.6
  • Mimi Gershon, 405.5 hours
  • Bert Kummel, MD 415.5
  • Melissa Murfin, 693
  • Mary Joseph, 1832
  • Eleanor McGowan, 1988
  • Harriett Palotto, 414
  • Donald Snyder, MD 1047.5
  • Gladys Thomas, 947.5

Fiver Year pins were awarded to:

  • Brian Bender
  • Anne Berna
  • Charlie Bradt
  • Julie Caller
  • Don Carey
  • Sandy Coran
  • Henrietta Daytz
  • Sherril Derenberger
  • Thomas Fotopoulos, DO
  • Debbie Frank
  • Joe Garafalo
  • Arlene Harris
  • Edward Herrod DDS
  • Barb Jacoby
  • Pauline Kennedy
  • Sandy Krawetz
  • Ronda Monmin
  • Ann Morton
  • Lana Nusbaum, MD
  • Bette Pritz
  • Bob Timmins
  • George Weirich
  • John White
  • Stanley Wright, DDS

Ten Year pins were awarded to:

  • Socrates Birsky
  • Mary Joseph
  • Jane Kummel
  • Bert Kummel, MD
  • Claire Sutter
  • George Ulma, MD

Fifteen Year Pins were awarded to:

  • Frances Braithwaite
  • Fiona Holland
  • Estrella Clemendor
  • Fiona Holland
  • Dolly Zirbel

Grace Goldstein was presented with a thirty year award by Jane Icely, who was instrumental in the evolution of the Center for Healthy Aging.

Volunteer Services Manager Caroline Allen coordinated the event, with the assistance of Senior Friendship Centers staff. Sponsors for the event included Windsor Senior Living, ResCare, McDonalds, GA Foods.  The breakfast was  prepared and served by  Senior Friendship Centers staff. 

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DeSoto Contact Information

DeSoto Senior Friendship Center

Friendship Centers
of DeSoto County

219 West Oak Street 
Arcadia, FL 34266
Fax: 863.494.2387
Mon. - Fri.: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.



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