Volunteers’ sizeable contributions to the city of Harker Heights were celebrated Feb. 22 at the 16th Annual Volunteer Appreciation Reception and Dinner at the city’s Activities Center.
Information released by the city calculates a volunteer’s time is valued at $25.11 per hour in Heights.
Using that formula, the 21,346 volunteer hours donated last year translates to $535,998.06.
By department, the hours and value included: Courts-141 hours at $3,540.51, Fire Department-180 hours at $4,519.80, Library-Teen: 2,422.25 hours at $60,822.70: Adults: 512 hours at $12,856.32, Parks and Rec-14,188.25 hours at $356,266.95, Pet Adoption Center-3,131.50 hours at $78,631.91, Police Department-618 hours at $15,517.98 and the Veterans Council-153 hours at $3,841.83.
Departments presented individual awards, as well.
Library — Alexandra and Rebecca Mack “Mack Attack Award”; Carolina Rosario, Isabel Ramon and Angelique Cook, “Organizer Extraordinaire Award”; Carissa Perez, “Smiley Award”; Mary Rose Ramon and Isabel Ramon, “Shelf Help Award”; Jeffrey Bowman, Amy “Gracie” Mercer, Jasmine Lee, Ian Reid and Jade Salisbury, “Summer Superstars Award.”
Police Department awards presented by Chief Mike Gentry and Community Services Officers Crystal Thomas and Peter Quichocho were to Jerry Spradlin, Marty Portmann, Vera McKenzie and Jimmie McCormack —“Thin Blue Line certificates.”
Parks and Recreation Director Jerry Bark awarded Nate Lopez, “Excellence in Youth Sports Coaching Award,” and Eunice Myers with the “Bright Star” Award.
Information Technology Director Gary Bates presented the following on behalf of the Pet Adoption Center: Susan Mooney —“Most Contributed Time,” Paula, Megan and Bethany Lee — “Most Fostered Animals,” Finni Dirr, Judy Killgo, Rebecca Killgo, Susan Wilson, Jennifer Peveto, Jordan Peveto, Carey Stites, Cierra Stites and Marta Hiraldo-Sosa — “Most Hours Contributed.”
Judge Billy Hall and Judge Garland Potvin presented the Judge Kosta Award to Catron “CJ” Jones. The Judge Hall Award went to Anthony Jones, and the Judge Potvin Award to Jacob Samarripa.
Two hundred-fifty names of volunteers in attendance, representing 19 departments, were displayed on a large video screen during the reception.
Mayor Spencer Smith recognized the following outgoing board and commission members: Margaret A. Cleghorn, Bobby Hoxworth, Jeff Petzke, David L. Kingsley, Brian Brannock, David Brown and Richard Lamb.
City Manager David Mitchell told the volunteers, “If you watch much television these days, you see the dark side of our world. You, however, are part of the solution and shine the light in our community. The quality of the community is made so by volunteers and what they have to offer. You add tremendous value to our programs and we thank you.”