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January 12, 2012

State Seeks Nominations for Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards
Awards Honor Illinoisans for Exemplary Community Service

SPRINGFIELD, Illinois – The Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service is now accepting nominations for the Third Annual Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards.  These awards recognize the importance of volunteerism and community service in the state of Illinois.

“Illinois is fortunate to have thousands of volunteers who unselfishly donate their time and talents to help others,” said Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Michelle R. B. Saddler.  “These awards allow us the opportunity to thank and honor those people that have made a positive change in our communities.” 

Individual awards will be presented to one youth (18 and under), one adult (19-54 years old) and one retiree/senior (55 years of age and older) in each of the Commission's five service regions across the state (Northeast, Northwest, East Central, West Central and Southern Illinois).  National Service Awards will be presented to one Learn and Serve, one AmeriCorps, and one Senior Corps member in each of the five regions.  Successful nominees will have volunteered in one of the following focus areas: Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Conservation, Disaster Preparedness/Response, Health, and Veterans Affairs.

The Serve Illinois Commission is a 25-member, bi-partisan board appointed by the Governor and administered by DHS.  Its mission is to improve Illinois communities by enhancing traditional volunteer activities and supporting national service programs, including the Illinois AmeriCorps program.

“All citizens have an opportunity to recognize their ability and help strengthen their communities through voluntary service.  Through Serve Illinois, we hope to expand volunteerism throughout rural, suburban and urban Illinois, and involve people of all backgrounds, cultures and ages,” added Ted Gibbs, Executive Director of the Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service.

Nominations are due to the Serve Illinois Commission by February 29, 2012.  For nomination forms and more information, please visit www.serve.illinois.gov.  Award recipients will be selected and notified by March 30, 2012.  The Serve Illinois Commission will host a luncheon to honor recipients in late April at the Executive Mansion in Springfield.



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