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Awards Luncheon

Our Award Programs serve as a way to thank members of our community whose projects or actions reflect the best of the American spirit of volunteerism by offering constructive solutions to contemporary problems. We are also proud to recognize the dedicated service of veterans and other individuals whose patriotic citizenship has left the community a better place for all.

Chapter President, Brenda Ferich with Adele Lancaster, Membership V.P.

Left to Right: George Washington Honor Medal recipient Noah Lizerbram, San Diego Honor Plaque recipients Colin and Karen Archipley, San Diego Honor Plaque recipient Bill Glover of the Allied Gardens Optimist Club, George Washington Honor Medal recipient Keri Jucha-mother Laura Jucha accepting and George Washington Honor Medal recipient Win Cox of Women’s Empower International.

Five outstanding persons were the recipients honored for their leadership, volunteerism, and excellent communications at the San Diego Chapter's 43nd Annual Awards Luncheon held at the Admiral Baker Club House on November 19, 2014.

                  KERI JUCHA – “MIRACLE MAKER”
    George Washington Honor Medal with Stand and Flag

Keri Jucha, now attending Indiana University began her fundraising efforts after a traumatic health crisis at age 10. After her lengthy hospital stay, she wanted to give back and expand her positive experience. She had a grand idea to start an on-line auction and raise funds through selling hand-made beaded jewelry. She raised enough money to purchase an entire movie theater system, complete with DVD’s and DVD players and donated it all to the children’s playroom at the Rady Children’s Hospital. Keri has never stopped raising funds and goes back each year to assist and has become a spokesperson on behalf of the hospital. The hospital honored her and gave her the moniker of “Miracle Maker”. The Association of Fundraising Professionals named Keri the 2013 Outstanding Youth/Student Volunteer. Keri, a young person turned her ideas into action and demonstrates that anyone of any age can make a difference.

                     SHAPING a SUSTAINABLE WORLD”
                          San Diego Honor Plaque

After three tours of combat duty in Iraq, Marine Sergeant Colin Archipley and his wife, Karen, started working on rehabilitating a three-acre avocado farm which they christened Archi’s Acres. They settled on bio-hydroponics that is the production of organic plants without soil within controlled environments. The couple created a six-week Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training (VSAT) program to offer combat veterans instruction as well as a path to employment opportunities in a high-growth-potential industry. The students are taught about greenhouse production, hydroponics, irrigation maintenance, plus farm and farmer’s market management principles. It also includes helping them prepare detailed business plans which they can use to start their own businesses upon the completion of the course. Karen and Colin are making a difference in the lives of the men and women who served our great country.

                   JENNA AND NOAH LIZERBRAM
     George Washington Honor Medal with Stand and Flag

Jenna and Noah Lizerbram, using their passion for music, are making a profound difference in the lives of people in need and with children suffering from the illness and effects of leprosy, half way around the world. These compassionate acts began with a 12-year old’s bat mitzvah’s challenge to “perform a charitable act, a good deed.” It grew from a year-long commitment of one child to organizing major concerts and events involving other young musicians in San Diego and at UCLA. Funds raised by this brother and sister team provide musical instruments and instruction, as well as entire music programs for the children of Rising Star Outreach School in both India and Tanzania.

                        San Diego Honor Plaque

For over thirty years the Allied Gardens Optimist Club has sponsored a Fly Away Breakfast for the students selected by FFVF San Diego to attend the leadership conference at Valley Forge and a trip to Washington, D. C. They are proud to encourage our future leaders. In addition, the Optimists have also worked with Foster Elementary School, including reconstructing the “Learning Tree,” a platform which motivates students to sit down and read. They have supported another important group: homeless veterans. Optimist members gather and organize resources all year and then join other groups for the annual Stand Down for Veterans which brings together over 1000 men and women to eat, sleep in safety and to be connected with services including haircuts, legal advice, medical and dental help and job hunting. We salute these efforts.

Jo Liddell, Sharon Lizerbram, Adele Lancaster, Brenda Ferich and Noah Lizerbram

Brenda Ferich, recipient Bill Glover representing the Allied Gardens Optimist Club and Virginia Syverson

Brenda Ferich, recipient Win Cox of Women’s Empowerment with Paula Day, Chapter Treasurer

     George Washington Honor Medal with Stand and Flag

Women’s Empowerment International makes it possible for people everywhere to come together to fund small loans to give impoverished women the tools they need to become self-sufficient entrepreneurs. Women’s Empowerment International (WE) took form in December, 2003, when 35 San Diego women met to discuss forming a new women in poverty - small, repayable business loans, typically less than $100. Since that December 2003 meeting, WE has provided over $900,000 of microloans to over 15,000 women in Honduras, Ghana Mexico, Benin and San Diego. Since 2006, the WE Center for STAR (Support, Training and Assistance to Refugees) has provided loans, grants and business training to San Diego’s large population of refugee women. The women are able to start or expand their small businesses to provide income for their families and gain independence and confidence.

Jan Kugler, Brenda Ferich with recipients Karen and Colin Archipley

Larry Zeiger with Izzy Skidmore

Sally Syren and award winner Laura Jucha accepting for daughter Keri with Brenda Ferich

Tom Helmantoler and Sally Thornton

Daughter in law Cindy with Kay Weil

Tom and Claire McNamara

Nancy and Bill Bamberger

Izzy Skidmore and Bernice Hollerbach

Linda Marteeny and Tom Helmantoler

Anne Walker and Joan Henkelmann

Many thanks to the Board for their support and donors who made generous contributions to the success of the event.

Dorothy Guthrie and daughter Virginia McKenzie

Susan Ellisor and sister Adele Lancaster

Paula Day

Freedom Store chair – Thalia Smith

Marje Acker

Optimist recipient Bill and Ida Glover with Janet Hurn

Optimists Robert McCormick, Al Barbarin with D’Myrea Mitchell and Virginia Syverson

Liz Cogdill and Will Hays

Fred and Debbie Gerlach with Jenny Benson and Al

Jan Kugler and Becky Reid

Recognition of community members who are making a significant difference is such an important part of our chapter's program. We need your help in identifying groups or individuals who “go above and beyond the call of duty”on a local regional or national level to promote good works and serve their community on an ongoing, day to day basis. If you are interested in nominating someone for an award, or interested in working on this committee, email Jo Liddell.