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Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism Hosts 35th Annual Governor’s Service Awards Ceremony

ANNAPOLIS, MD– The Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism today hosted the 35th Annual Governor’s ServiceAwards to celebrate the outstanding volunteer contributions of Maryland residents and organizations. A total of 17 honorees received awards in categories including Corporate Business, Veteran, Youth, and the prestigious Champion of Service.

“Our administration is proud to recognize the countless efforts of volunteers who are dedicated to serving their communities and our state,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “Today’s awardees have gone above and beyond to change Maryland for the better, and I congratulate each and every recipient on this well-deserved honor.”

This year’s Governor’s Champion of Service Award was presented to Calvin G. Butler, Jr., Chief Executive Officer of Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) for his leadership in establishing a culture of community engagement at BGE. Butler has encouraged BGE employees to give back to the community and embrace diversity and inclusion at work, and in the communities where they serve. In 2017 under Butler’s leadership, over 1,500 BGE employees volunteered more than 22,000 hours of service at nonprofit organizations across the state. Employees also raised $250,000 in support of BGE’s 2017 Cause Initiative – the American Diabetes Association – and over $23,000 on Giving Tuesday. Butler also currently serves on the boards of several Baltimore-based organizations including the Baltimore Community Foundation, University of Maryland Medical Center, Greater Baltimore Committee, and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. He also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for his alma mater, Bradley University.

A full list of award recipients is provided below by category:

Champion of Service
Calvin G. Butler, Jr. – Chief Executive Officer of Baltimore Gas and Electric Company.

AmeriCorps Alum
Cathryn Paul – Alumna of the AmeriCorps program, New Americans Opportunity Project for Maryland, and returning volunteer site coordinator for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance.

Corporate Business
Skyline Technology Solutions – Information technology service company based in Glen Burnie, Maryland. Through the Skyline Humanitarian Committee, employees are provided paid time off to volunteer for various nonprofits in Maryland and around the world.

Emerging Leader
Yuri Chia – College senior pursuing a dual degree in economics and engineering at Goucher College and Johns Hopkins University who volunteers in various activities including Maryland-Taiwan (Republic of China) Rotary Youth Exchanges.

Exemplary Service Learning
Gaithersburg High School – Students at Gaithersburg High School, located in Montgomery County, Maryland, volunteered in a service project for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. The experience transformed student attitudes toward service, encouraging a surge in service-learning.

Janet Gentry – Volunteer leader of the holiday program at St. Margaret Church in Harford County since 1993.

First Responder
Mathew N. Silverman – Law enforcement officer in the United States Marshals Service and law enforcement liaison/volunteer coordinator for the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation.

Greater Baltimore Urban League Auxiliaries – Guild and Young Professionals – Volunteer arm of the Greater Baltimore Urban League and coordinators of the Saturday Leadership Program, a college and career readiness program for students in grades 8-12 in the Baltimore area.

Abdul Hai Sheikh – Founder of the seniors group and volunteer refugee coordinator at the Montgomery County Muslim Foundation.

Lifetime Achievement
Ginny Simoneau – Leader in the early childhood education community in Frederick County and founding director of the Children’s Center of Walkersville.

Member of the Board
Carolyn Core – Chair of the Board for Sagepoint Senior Living Services and Sagepoint Care.
Peter B. Rosenwald, II – Chair of the Board for Maryland Food Bank.

National Service
Kelci Reiss – Strong City Baltimore AmeriCorps VISTA alumni at the Charm City Clinic in Baltimore.

Nonprofit Volunteer Program
Mezu International Foundation Inc – Volunteer-driven nonprofit dedicated to preventing vision loss for low-income community members by providing free vision screenings, eyeglasses, and mediation from volunteer licensed optometrists.

State Employee
Effie W. Cox – State employee serving in the Worcester County Health Department, environmental educator, and founder of the Adopt Your Beach program, which engages citizen volunteers in clean-ups along Maryland’s oceanfront beaches.

Charles Douglas Harris – Army veteran, hunter education instructor, and founder of Operation Heroes Support, which hosts outdoor events for disabled veterans.

Christina Zhou – Founder of the nonprofit Teach the Future and senior at Atholton High School in Columbia, Maryland.

For more information on the Governor’s Service Awards visit:

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