Simply put, Virginia nonprofits would not be able to accomplish the things they do without the support of volunteers.
The annual Governor’s Volunteerism and Community Service Awards recognizes the outstanding contributions of individual volunteers of all ages and a handful of organizations. Each year, the Virginia governor honors recipients who are actively involved in strengthening their communities.
“The resilience, generosity and commitment of these volunteers exemplifies the best of Virginia,” said Gov. Glenn Youngkin. “Each honoree has made an impressive impact in their community and made life better for Virginians.”
Read about each of the individual awardees below.
Outstanding Youth Volunteer: Evan Nied
Nied is the founder of Planting Shade, a nonprofit that has planted more than 13,000 trees through 10 local chapters across seven states. Even for his young age, he’s been a staunch advocate for community conservation efforts and human rights. Read more >
Outstanding Young Adult Volunteer: Meghan McLees
As a student at the University of Mary Washington, McLees actively serves with Circle K and Alternative Service Breaks. She also co-led and prepared educational materials for elementary school children in the Stafford Junction “Brain Builders” program, volunteering more than 60 hours last year. Read more >
Outstanding Adult Volunteer: Nancy Feldner
Feldner donates more than 100 hours of her time each month with the Columbia Baptist Church’s Spend Yourself Food Pantry in Bailey’s Crossroads, providing cooking and nutrition presentations. She assists hundreds of low-income and in-need families each year. Read more >
Outstanding Senior Volunteer: Robert Schnapp
As founder of A Simple Gesture Reston, Schnapp mobilizes his community to help neighbors overcome hunger and food insecurity. This year, the program reached 1,500 donor households and donated 162,000 pounds of groceries to four emergency food pantries in the Reston and Herndon area. Read more >
Outstanding Family Volunteers: Frank and Mae Antkievicz
For more than 20 years, the Antkieviczs’ have volunteered with the English as a Second Language (ESL) program at Walnut Grove Baptist Church in Hanover County. Thanks to their thousands of hours of service, more than 450 students’ lives have been touched. Read more >
Outstanding Family Volunteers: The Berry Family
This Harrisonburg-based family founded the “Brent Berry Food Drive” 15 years ago. The 2022 drive drew in the largest collection ever – an estimated $65,000 in food and personal hygiene items for community members in need. All items are donated to the local Salvation Army, serving 300 families. Read more >
Five organizations were also selected for their partnerships with local nonprofits and spirit of giving back.
“Through their contributions to Virginia communities, they set an example for what the power of volunteering can accomplish and inspire others to act,” said Cliff Yee, chairman of the Virginia Governor’s Advisory Board on Service and Volunteerism.
Learn more about the Governor’s Volunteerism and Community Service Awards and see the full list of awardees here.