People’s Choice Awards
Every year, the Community Foundation holds the People’s Choice Awards to recognize and celebrate individuals in the community who give generously of their time and talents to make Washington County a better place to live.
The 2019 People’s Choice Awards celebrated the good work of three People’s Choice volunteer winners and one Rising Star winner. In addition to honoring these individuals, the Community Foundation created a $5,000 designated endowment fund in honor of each Volunteer winner and contributed to the Young Philanthropists Fund in recognition of the Rising Star winner.
People’s Choice Volunteer Awards
Evelyn Eichelberger has volunteered at Children In Need for the past eight years. She is the Sorting Room Supervisor in charge of approximately 50 volunteers with many different skill levels. Evelyn works with retired individuals five days a week as well as students and coaches three days a week from five high schools. She makes sure the donations are sorted and stocked for over 900 families. Evelyn is very involved with her church, Saint James Brethren in Fairplay, where she prepares food for the annual indoor/outdoor yard sale, chairs the Kitchen Ministry (Benevolent Meals) and served as a substitute Sunday School teacher from 2009-2017. She was chairperson for the Ag Expo in charge of food sales and volunteers to benefit her church. Evelyn has been a member of the Women’s Missionary Society for 25 years. She also volunteers once a month at the Church of the Brethren Missions in New Windsor, MD. Evelyn elected to have her endowment fund designated to Children in Need.
Paul Kadin started volunteering with AYSO (American Youth Soccer Organization) in South Washington County in 1998 and has run the league since 2000. He operates in many capacities, including coaching and serving as the volunteer coordinator, coaching administrator/trainer, referee administrator/trainer, concession chair, grounds maintenance chair and filling in wherever needed. Paul personally teaches all levels of coach training at no charge as well as referee training and mentoring. Under Paul’s leadership, the league mandates balanced teams at all levels, assures everyone plays and enforces good sportsmanship and safety. “Paul is THE reason for youth soccer in South County,” said Mr. and Mrs. Fiola. “As a parent, he recognized that AYSO does not merely teach physical soccer skills, but uses soccer to teach life skills. He spends 1000’s of hours at the AYSO fields in both the spring and fall volunteering.” Paul chose to create his fund for the Boonsboro AYSO. Check out Paul’s video on WDVM.
Ira “Junior” Moats
Ira “Junior” Moats has volunteered at the Hancock Volunteer Fire Company for over 55 years as a firefighter, assistant chief, houseman and in various board positions. He serves as the fleet manager for all fire company apparatus and maintains the building and property. Ira is also involved in all fundraising efforts. Although he no longer actively fights fires, he still drives apparatus to calls and provides support to other firefighters on the scene. He works hard to make sure the Hancock units get out when needed. “His service to the greater Hancock area has been invaluable and remarkable,” said Deb Cohill. “He has been a mentor to younger members and sets an example for anyone interested in service to their community. Ira is always prepared to put his own life on the line for others, is a humble man and highly regarded by local law enforcement personnel and EMS providers. He is the ‘go to guy’ that you know you can always count on.” Ira elected to have his endowment fund established for Martha’s House in Hancock. Learn more about Ira here in this video courtesy of WDVM.
Rising Star Award
The Rising Star Award honors someone aged 25-40 who demonstrates a commitment to the Washington County community through volunteer service and financial support. This year’s Rising Star winner, Kandace Carpenter, is the incoming board president for Boys & Girls Club of Washington County where she serves on the executive committee, organizational development committee and building committee. She is the current vice president of the Hagerstown Sunrise Rotary and coordinates the exchange student program. Kandace serves on the board of Lasting Change and actively volunteers with Court Appointed Special Advocates. She supports many other nonprofits and initiatives financially. Kandace received her Doctor of Law from George Mason University and is the managing partner of the Law Office of Carpenter & Deisher, LLC in Funkstown.
The Community Foundation appreciates the generous support of the following businesses that help make the People’s Choice Awards possible: Antietam Wealth Management; BB&T; The Family Heritage Trust Company; First Energy Foundation (Potomac Edison); M&T Bank; Mason Investment Advisory Services, Inc., Middletown Valley Bank, William Dutton Family Fund; Valley Mall and WDVM.
Nonprofit Shining Star Award: Buck Browning
People’s Choice Nonprofit Award: Washington County Commission on Aging
Rising Star Award: Cort Meinelschmidt
People’s Choice Volunteer Award: June Datum, June Datum Endowment Fund for the Maryland Theatre
Nonprofit Shining Star Award: Deb Cohill
People’s Choice Nonprofit Award: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washington County
Rising Star Award: Sam Buhrman
People’s Choice Volunteer Award: Jackie Fouche, Mount Hope Prison Ministry Endowment Fund
Nonprofit Shining Star Award: Jodie Ostoich
People’s Choice Nonprofit Award: Humane Society of Washington County
Rising Star Award: Kelsi Palmer
People’s Choice Volunteer Award: Will Godwin, Therapeutic Gardens at the Western Maryland Hospital Center
*As three honorees chose to benefit the Community Free Clinic, the name of this fund has been changed to the Community Free Clinic People’s Choice Awards Fund. Five honorees have chosen REACH, and thus five $5,000 gifts have been made to the existing REACH Endowment.