Believe It, Achieve It - Empowerment Award - Lola Davis for taking the initiative to set up regular virtual meetings with members (including members served by other organizations). The “Quarantine and Chill” sessions allowed members to continue to communicate and socialize with peers and staff.
Community Inclusion Award - Andrea Hernandez for going above and beyond in developing engaging and creative community integration opportunities for members. She established a “Movies with Mainstream” at the Ames Public Library, found alternative volunteering opportunities that avoid large groups, and coordinated with many businesses and community organizations to keep members active.
Winners in Wellness Award - Trudy Leutters who has been an invaluable asset during the pandemic. She has been a daily resource for many in the organization, problem-solving and implementing processes and procedures that have kept our members and staff as safe as possible.
Champion of Change Award - Marcanne Lynch for being at the forefront of not only keeping our employees safe, but having to deal with ever-changing federal guidelines and a workforce that is anxious, frustrated, and overwhelmed. From the start, Marc has approached the crisis with patience, diligence, compassion, and positivity.
Resilience Award (new this year) - Joe Vaughn (posthumous) and Rosemary Kobrock - It is no secret why Joe was selected for this award. In future years, the award will be known as the Joe Vaughn Resilience Award. During his battle with cancer, he was never discouraged and continued to spread joy wherever he went. His dad said it best - “Joe beat cancer by being himself.” Rosemary was selected for inspiring others and displaying great strength as she dealt with her husband’s cancer diagnosis, and eventual death due to COVID. She has faced tragedy and financial hardship and yet continues to come to work and be a positive force for the staff and members.
Difference Maker of the Year - Kelsey Robbins (HCBS) and Charity Perez (MH) - Kelsey was selected for her initiative and dedication during CARF preparations. Her hard work and outstanding communication were an asset in preparing for the CARF survey, but more importantly, has created positive outcomes for the members she serves. Charity was chosen for her creativity and problem solving skills during COVID. In the TAY program, the lack of activity during COVID has been particularly challenging for the young adults. Charity spent a great deal of time finding opportunities for members to be active in the community, arranging for regular volunteer hours. With her help, all of the members are working part-time hours in the community and learning long-term independent living skills.
Rising Star - Leader of the Year - Edward Morris for his leadership in adapting to significant change, independently pursuing personal development (obtaining Master’s degree), and being a role model for members and staff. He continually takes on new challenges, is a positive representative of Mainstream in his work at Hach, and is a constant source of positivity.