The Junior League of Collin County (JLCC) hosted the 2016 Collin County Excellence in Volunteer Service Awards this past Thursday, April 7, at the Sheraton Hotel in McKinney. The event honors nonprofit organizations and individuals who have greatly impacted the lives of those in Collin County. Through a formal application process, recipients are chosen by members of the JLCC Advisory board.
The event began promptly at 6:30pm with a welcome message from JLCC president Jennifer Tinsman. Following Tinsman’s welcome message, the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas Honor Guard led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance. Arta Fan from Plano West Senior High School was one of the highlights of the night, singing the National Anthem a cappella. Keynote speaker, Hilary Jackson of Capitol One Home Loans, spoke on the importance of corporate volunteerism in the community.
Dinner gave attendees a chance to catch up with their peers and network with over 200 attendees. The atmosphere was welcoming and inviting. Even if you didn’t know the person you were sitting next to, you knew them by the time you left.
The night was full of awards and appreciation. JLCC has outlined all award criteria on its website. Honorees of the evening included:
Middle School Student Volunteer of the Year: Nikita Ramachandran
Nominated by Vibha Foundation, presented by 2016-2017 JLCC President Elect Maria Moffatt.
High School Student Volunteer of the Year: Emily Means
Nominated by National Charity League, presented by Ann Boswell, JLCC Sustaining Advisor, who remarked, “I have seen Emily grow up and continue to do wonderful things. This is very emotional for me.”
Youth Organization of the Year: Young Men’s Service League, McKinney Chapter
Presented by Katy Autry, 2015-2016 JLCC Ways and Means V.P.
Community Volunteer of the Year: Marilyn Mahoney
Nominated by Children’s Health/Children’s Medical Center of Plano, presented by Rick Wells, owner of Rick’s Chophouse, Harvest, and Adriatica, and the 2014 Community Leader award recipient.
Community Leader of the Year: David Pearce, who received a standing ovation for all his dedicated work serving as Journey of Hope’s volunteer CFO for the last 16 years, as well as volunteering over 500 hours in the past year.
Presented by Rebecca Egelston Caso, a former JLCC President and the 2013 Lifetime Achievement award recipient.
Community Organization of the Year: Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Collin County
Presented by Tressie Johnsen from The Samaritan Inn, the 2015 Community Organization of the Year award recipient.
Small Business Leadership Award: Masergy
Nominated by Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County, presented by Plano City Councilman David Downs and Darrell Rodenbaugh of Champion Fire and Security, the 2015 Small Business Leadership award recipient.
Big Business Leadership Award: Texas 811
Nominated by The Turning Point, presented by Plano City Councilman David Downs and Darrell Rodenbaugh of Champion Fire and Security, the 2015 Small Business Leadership award recipient.
Spirit of Collaboration: Ann Harris, who received her honor with a standing ovation, cheers, and lots of hugs.
Nominated by the North Texas Community Giving Foundation. City of Frisco Mayor, Maher Maso, presented the special award recognizing a community advocate who has made significant gifts of leadership and stewardship to many non-profits over the years.
JLCC made sure to thank everyone who made the event possible, including:
Gold Sponsor: Chris Krupa-Downs and David Downs; Goldenlight Creative
Silver Sponsor: In Memory of Carole Adams Egelston
In-Kind Donors: Art Centre of Plano; Blue Ribbon Trophy; CASA of Collin County; Children’s health Children’s Medical Center Plano; McKinney Repertory Theatre; North Texas Performing Arts; Sheraton McKinney Hotel, Z’s Florist, Young Men’s Service League, McKinney Chapter
The Awards Committee: Sara Egelston Akers, Chair, Ann Boswell, Sustaining Advisor, Janie Gilkison, Fern Gimenez, Debbie Hayes, Kelly Noonan, Amanda Willoughby
Table Sponsors: CASA of Collin County, Journey of Hope, Plano Sports Authority, Texas Excavation Safety System, Hope’s Door, North Texas Performing Arts, Turning Point, and Debbie Hayes
As JLCC President Jennifer Tinsman closed out the night, one thing was clear: Collin County is a community full of individuals and businesses who want to give back. “Here’s to all volunteers, those dedicated people who believe in all work and no pay,” Robert Orben concluded.
Enjoy our gallery our photos of the evening from photographer Charlise Hill-Larson. Click to enlarge.