Diaspora

Service above Self Awards presented at rotary – Brainerd Dispatch

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BRAINERD — The Brainerd Noon Rotary Club wants to continue honoring community members who go above and beyond in their day to day life.
The Brainerd Noon Rotary Club, along with the Central Lakes Rotary Club, are participating in a new recognition service project called the Service above Self Award. They are honoring three community members every quarter based on nominations.
The club began the recognition in March of 2022 and has made it a regular award once a quarter. They met Dec. 19 and recognized three community members in the Brainerd lakes area who have gone above and beyond in their day to day life.
The three recipients for this quarter were Kathy Adams, Rose Payne and John Erickson.
Adams dedicated some of her time helping people in Haiti for many years through The Haiti Project. She was nominated by Lynn Hunt, who went to Haiti with Adams.
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“She has worked so hard to help people that I thought she really deserves this service above self (award),” Hunt said.
Together in Haiti, Adams and Hunt worked to raise money and help build things the village was lacking. Adams, Lakes Area Food Shelf executive director, has been involved in the project for 10-12 years. She also helped sponsor an orphan who went to medical school and became a doctor.
Payne was recognized for her volunteer work at Essentia Health. She was nominated by Debbie Anderson, the volunteer supervisor at Essentia Health.
“Rose has been volunteering for over 10 years at the hospital and she volunteered through the pandemic,” Anderson said. “Almost every volunteer left. It was kind of like, ‘OK, I have to wear a mask and volunteer at the same time. No way.’ Rose puts on that mask every single day and we still have to do it as of today. She volunteered through the pandemic when we did 700 vaccines a day. Who was at that door to greet every one of those people? It was Rose.”
She was there more than any other volunteer, Anderson said, and serves on the advisory board. She still comes into the hospital to volunteer every Monday and Tuesday, as well as the clinic on Fridays.
Erickson, the archivist of the Brainerd Public School system, was nominated by Brainerd High School Principal Andrea Rusk for the volunteer work he puts in for the school system.
“A number of years ago John stepped forward and became our Brainerd Public Schools archivist and the salary for that position is he gets the gift of working with me and others in the district,” Rusk said. “We hang out a lot but I’m not exaggerating at all. There’s been weeks that John, throughout the 12 months when sometimes schools get quiet in the summer, John spends an excess of 40 hours a week volunteering.”
Community members who are not a part of the Rotary Club can nominate someone in a Google form found on the club’s website at www.brainerdrotary.org/ . The club will continue to recognize community members who go above and beyond in their everyday activities.
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SARA GUYMON may be reached at 218-855-5851 or at sara.guymon@brainerddispatch.com . Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/SaraGuymon .

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