AUGUSTA -- In a year that has tested so many people, Maine communities stood up to support those in need in ways that we have never seen before. This year, Volunteer Maine is recognizing the people who have gone above and beyond for Maine communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Volunteer Maine, the State Service Commission, is seeking nominations for all categories of the 35th annual Governor's Awards for Service and Volunteerism. This year's award program will cover "the COVID-19 year” from March 1, 2020 until February 28, 2021. Nominations will close on Friday, April 30, 2021 at 5 p.m.
Award winners will be honored during a ceremony to be held in June -- details to be announced at a later date. Recipients of competitive awards for individuals, teams and organizations as well as those named to the Maine Volunteer Roll of Honor will be recognized during the same ceremony.
Since 1987, the awards have celebrated and recognized the role of citizen volunteers in the success and vitality of Maine communities. At the same time, the awards seek to inspire others to be active in civic life and follow in the footsteps of those recognized. The awards program is managed for the Governor's Office by Volunteer Maine.
More information on the Governor's Awards for Service and Volunteerism -- including categories, online nomination instructions, eligibility and selection criteria -- can be found on the Volunteer Maine website at this link.
Photo caption: (Left to right) Michael Katz, executive director of Camp Sunshine, and Michael Wisecup, 2019 Maine Volunteer of the Year.
About the Maine Volunteer Rolls of Honor
The Maine Volunteer Rolls of Honor are a statewide effort to show appreciation to those citizens who go above and beyond in terms of the time they devote to serving their communities.
Adult nominees must be
- 19 years of age or older;
- and volunteered at least 250 documented from March 1, 2020 to February 28, 2021.
Young Maine Volunteer Roll of Honor nominees must be
- 18 years of age or younger;
- and volunteered at least 25 hours from March 1, 2020 to February 28, 2021.
All volunteers certified as qualifying by the nominating program will be recognized. This is not a competitive recognition program.
All those named to a Roll of Honor will be recognized at the June event. Each will receive a personalized certificate, and a commemorative service medal (youth) or pin (adult).
All nominations must be sent electronically.
About the competitive award categories
In total, eight award recipients are selected from nominations by a panel of volunteer reviewers. The panel includes past award recipients, Commission members and community representatives. This year’s categories for individuals and teams are as follows:
Individual or team categories
- Maine Volunteer of the Year
- Young Maine Volunteer of the Year
- Employee Volunteer of the Year
- Outstanding National Service Volunteer
- Outstanding Volunteer Team
- Excellence in Volunteer Leadership
- Outstanding Employee Volunteer Program
- Outstanding Non-Profit Volunteer Program
A note on competitive award nominations submitted in 2020
Competitive awards were not presented in 2020 due to the pandemic. However, any nomination for a competitive award (individual, teams and organizations) submitted for consideration in 2020 will be eligible for recognition this year. A member of the Volunteer Maine staff team will contact 2020 nominators if more information is needed.
About Volunteer Maine
Volunteer Maine, the state service commission, builds capacity and sustainability in Maine's volunteer sector by funding service programs, developing volunteer managers and service-learning practitioners, raising awareness of the scope and the impact of the volunteer sector, and encouraging an ethic of service. On Oct. 16, 2019, the Maine Commission for Community Service adopted the public identity Volunteer Maine.
Bryan Roche, communications officer
Office: (207) 624-7836
Cell: (207) 446-3471
Award program contact (questions and clarifications: non-media)
Kelsey Preecs, program officer, volunteer initiatives
Office: (207) 624-7838
"Annual Governor’s Awards for Service and Volunteerism to cover ‘the COVID-19 year and honor volunteers who selflessly help fellow Mainers" -- Bangor Daily News -- access story here.
"Volunteer Maine seeks nominees for service awards" -- CentralMaine(dot)Com-- access story here.
"Volunteer Maine seeks nominees for service awards" -- Sun Journal -- access story here.