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Meet the 2018 Margot S. Freudenberg National Volunteer Award recipients

This year, the award goes to Laura Bruce from Marshfield, WI, and the Tuesday Crew (Elaine Dixon, Ronnie Dixon, JoAnn Lewis, Bobby Manning, and Patsy Manning) from Greenville, NC.

These award winners have given their time to make a difference in the lives of cancer patients. Let's learn more about their impact at their local Hope Lodge!

Individual Award Winner

Laura has been dedicated to volunteering at the Hope Lodge in Marshfield, WI, since 2003 when the facility opened to guests. As a volunteer, she has spent more than 1,600 hours in various roles including making beds, managing fellow volunteers, greeting guests, and filling in where she is needed. 

She is the volunteer coordinator and helps to recruit new volunteers, guides them through the onboarding process, manages volunteer schedules, and recognizes fellow volunteers for the contributions they are making. She also regularly participates in annual fundraisers for the facility, Daffodil Days, and her local Relay For Life event.

"It's difficult for me to summarize Laura's contribution to Hope Lodge," said Jewel Quelle, Hope Lodge manager. "She fills in every gap we have, filling whatever need we might have, and has done so from day one."

In her "spare time," Laura volunteers with Columbus Catholic Schools and Our Lady of Peace Parish.

Group Award Winner

In 2005, the Tuesday Crew began volunteering at the McConnell-Raab Hope Lodge in Greenville, NC. This group of family and friends all started volunteering because one high school student needed volunteer services hours. Now, 13 years later, the Tuesday Crew spends hours preparing feasts for guests and leading devotionals and sing-a-longs every Tuesday. That adds up to serving approximately 13,000 meals conservatively at Hope Lodge. Wow!

They go "all out" on holidays by dressing for the season and serving seasonal dishes. For Valentine's Day, they serve a "couples" dinner for the caregiver and patient. In December, they host a special holiday dinner program for guests that includes a visit from Santa. They also serve at the Lodge's annual Volunteer Appreciation celebration and our reunion each year.

"When we count our blessings, we can always count the Tuesday Crew," said Katrina Combs, Hope Lodge manager.

Additionally, this crew raises money for Relay For Life by selling hand-crafted/homemade items such as jellies, jams, pickles, Christmas wreaths, and wooden benches. They also help sponsor the Pitt County Survivors dinner each year and attend the Pitt County Fair to raise awareness and money for their Relay For Life team. 

An incredible volunteer group, Tuesday Crew, welcomes each guest at the McConnell-Raab Hope Lodge with down-home southern charm and loving hearts.

About the award

The Margot S. Freudenberg National Award is named after Margot S. Freudenberg, founder of the first Hope Lodge facility in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1970. It honors an outstanding individual and a caring group of volunteers each year.


If you have any questions, please contact Lora Strauss, regional director, Hope Lodge Operations. 

  • Are you looking for recruitment resources? New Volunteer Recruitment Page now available

    ​We know you've heard us say this before, but you, as volunteers, are often our best volunteer recruiters! You know how to share the ACS story by sharing your first-hand volunteer experience. 

    The Volunteer Engagement team is consistently evaluating, updating, and creating new recruitment resources to support the work you are doing. We are excited to share the new Volunteer Recruitment page on My Society Source to get this information to you.

    What can you find on this page?

    • Recruitment Resources: On this new page you will find an array of volunteer recruitment resources – including a volunteer recruitment toolkit, volunteer spokesperson resources, recruiting young professional tips, and so much more. All resources are organized based on programs, events, and audiences.
    • Resource Spotlight: Our new monthly resource spotlight will highlight a different resource each month to make your recruitment efforts a little easier. The first Resource Spotlight featuring the Volunteer Program and Event Guide is now available. Check it out!
    • Important Links: You can also find links to sites like Brand Toolkit and, where you can access additional resources and information. To access materials on Brand Toolkit, you will need to complete the simple registration process.

    On this page, you can also stay up-to-date on all the volunteer engagement news. If you have any questions, please contact

  • Today Show honors ACS volunteer and breast cancer patient

    Watch Kelly Thomas, a Making Strides Pacesetter from New Jersey, react to a major surprise.

    This Friday, October 19, New Jersey Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Pacesetter, Eagles fan, and breast cancer patient Kelly Thomas will be featured on the Today Show.  Mark your calendars or plan to watch the replay! 

    Kelly will be talking about her diagnosis last year and receiving a VERY special surprise from the Philadelphia Eagles. Although she is a breast cancer patient, our Crucial Catch partnership with the NFL focuses on multiple cancers. We are hopeful the messaging reflects all the ways we are fighting for a world without cancer.

    Special thanks to the Northeast Region communications, sports & entertainment and the MSABC Point Pleasant Beach team for their help with this exciting opportunity! 

    Of course, as with all media, the air date is subject to change, so we’ll alert staff if the date changes. 

    About Kelly

    Kelly’s breast cancer journey began this past January when she was diagnosed with stage 3 Triple Negative Breast Cancer at 33 years of age. “Fear, anger and uncertainty were a few of the emotions that hit me hard.  I even had a doctor tell me that I could die from this.  How could this have happened to me?  Was it something I ate?  Was it my job?  Do I live too close to power lines?  I may never truly know.  But let’s back up a second, let me take you on a journey. It was a Sunday morning, and I go to sit on my couch and for some reason I fold my arms, I never fold my arms, and I feel a lump on my left breast.  Impossible, I always check myself each month, I check the right one and nothing, but the lump on my left breast is huge, like a golf ball.” 

    After appointments at her OB and receiving a biopsy, the results came in that Kelly did, in fact, have breast cancer.  Through her journey Kelly has advocated for herself and found an amazing team of medical staff. During her surgery, a second type of cancer was found growing in her auxiliary lymph nodes and it had begun cloning itself. 

    Follow Kelly on her journey, and offer support and well wishes! She posts regularly on her Instagram account @talkischeapxo.

  • Seeking volunteers and staff for a new health equity workgroup

    To make further progress in the fight against cancer, ACS is strengthening its commitment and action toward addressing cancer disparities and achieving health equity. We continue our path forward within the Healthy Communities mission platform to support the opportunity for everyone to lead healthier lives, including preventing, treating and surviving cancer. 

    As part of the ACS's partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, we are looking for volunteers and staff to join the National Health Equity Workgroup. This workgroup will support a goal of developing volunteer engagement strategies that will build awareness, education, and action. 

    For more detailed information about the workgroup, please read the overview document available on My Society Source. The deadline to apply is November 30 and you can submit your application by filling out the form online

    If there are any questions, please contact

  • Tech savvy volunteer trainers still needed; application deadline Deadline extended to Oct. 5

    ​Deadline for submitting applications extended to Oct. 5!  

    Our National Volunteer Training Team (NVTT) is recruiting new members to assist with training and development for volunteers and staff in technology-related systems and processes.  The ACS is nearing the launch of a variety of new tools and systems and will need to build capacity across the organization. 

    The NVTT will conduct virtual training for these new technology platforms beginning in early 2019. Preparation for training will take place over the last few months of 2018. 

    If you fit the bill, please apply! Or, if know a tech savvy volunteer, please encourage them to join this important training team. 

    We welcome brand new volunteers to this role, as well as existing volunteers.

    A complete list of the role expectations and requirements is included in the application.  

  • Learn how to tell your ACS story. Keep it simple and aim for the heart

    All ACS volunteers are encouraged to become familiar with Telling the ACS Story – an updated, integrated effort to educate and equip staff and volunteers with information and resources to share our work and stories about our impact in the fight for a world without cancer.

    Through sharing your stories on why you support ACS, you can:

    • Build Relevance: Messages shared by employees went 561% further than the same message shared on a brand-owned channel. We need to better amplify the impact we are having on cancer by leveraging our most important resource, our staff and volunteers.
    • Drive Revenue: Our data tells us that when people realize that ACS helps someone they care about, they're more likely to support us or donate. So, staff and volunteer stories are vital for people to see the impact of ACS.

    To make it easier to find resources to learn and share our important work, we've rolled out the new ACS Story page on My Society Source. Some of the new and updated resources include:

    And, this one-pager about how our Mission | Vision | Values | Promises are connected further describes the importance of our interactions and how they tie together with our Mission and Vision as well as our brand positioning.

    Your voice is important! Work to better understand and tell the ACS story:

    For more information, contact Stephanie Williams, strategic director, regional marketing planning.

  • Meet the three new members of the Society's Board of Directors

    At its August meeting last week, the American Cancer Society Board of Directors elected officers and directors of the 2019 Board. 

    We welcome three new faces:

    • Mark A. Goldberg, MD – medical oncologist and hematologist on the faculty of Brigham & Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA
    • Michelle M. Le Beau, PhD – professor and director of the University of Chicago Medicine Comprehensive Cancer Center in Chicago, IL
    • Terri McClements – mid-Atlantic managing partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in McLean, VA

    Our 2019 Officers:

    • Daniel P. Heist, CPA - Chair (pictured in the smaller image)
    • Jeffrey L. Kean - Vice Chair
    • Carmen E. Guerra, MD, MSCE, FACP - Board Scientific Officer
    • John Alfonso, CPA, CGMA - Secretary/Treasurer
    • Kevin J. Cullen, MD - Immediate Past Chair

    2019 Reelected Board members:

    • Gareth T. Joyce
    • Amit Kumar, PhD
    • Michael T. Marquardt
    • Joseph M. Naylor
    • William D. Novelli

    We would also like to recognize and thank our outgoing 2018 Board members for their dedication and commitment to our lifesaving mission: Arnold M. Baskies, MD, FACS, Jorge Luis Lopez, Esq., and Scarlott K. Mueller, MPH, RN.

    For more details on the 16 Directors and five Officers, as well as their terms, read the 2019 Board Directory

  • Meet our extraordinary Quality of Life Award winners

    ​The winners of our Quality of Life Awards go above and beyond to help those that have heard the words "you have cancer," and the loved ones standing by their side. For these individuals it is more than a career; it is a lifestyle.  

    Because of their tremendous efforts to positively impact the lives of those on their cancer journey, the selection workgroups are pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Lane Adams and Trish Greene Quality of Life Awards.

    Lane Adams Quality of Life Award winners:

    • Diogo Barbosa: A patient navigator for the GI Lab-Denver Health in Denver, CO
    • Catherine Gaines, PA-C: A certified physician assistant for Gibson Cancer Center Navigation Department at Southeastern Regional Medical Center in Lumberton, NC
    • Jackie Miller, RN, BSN, OCN: Manager of the NJ Cancer Education and Early Detection (CEED) Program at Virtua Health System in Medford, NJ
    • Roshani Patel, MD, FACS: An instructor in surgery at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, and a breast surgeon at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and Elliot Hospital in Manchester, NH
    • Amy Roberts, LCSW: An oncology social worker in Ocala, FL
    • Mandy Samford: A cosmetologist in Gilbert, AZ

    Trish Greene Quality of Life Award winner:

    • Barbara Ann Given, PhD, MSN, BSN: A distinguished professor and interim associate dean for research at Michigan State University in East Lansing, MI

    The presentation of these awards will take place during the 2019 Nationwide Volunteer and Staff Leadership Summit in Dallas, TX.

    The Lane Adams Quality of Life Award is reserved for those unique caregivers who lead in their areas of expertise and make a significant impact on patients, families, and communities. Winners of the Lane Adams Quality of Life Award include individuals who provide direct care, counsel, and/or service to cancer patients, and their families.

    The Trish Greene Quality of Life Award is presented annually to an outstanding investigator in the field of quality of life research. This award recognizes the importance of the contributions of researchers who have devoted a significant portion of their careers to the various areas of quality of life and have accomplished outstanding research that benefits cancer patients and their families.

    As a reminder, to stay up-to-date on the latest ACS news, subscribe to the My Society Source Weekly Newsfeed.

    If you have any questions about the Lane Adams Quality of Life Award or the Trish Greene Quality of Life Award, please visit the Volunteer Recognition page on My Society Source or contact Caira Turner, senior volunteer recognition manager, at

  • Volunteer turns the blues into pink passion

    When Margie Elkins of Niantic, CT, remembered the birthday of a dear friend she had watched pass away from pancreatic cancer, she felt a need to do something to give back to others facing the disease. She reached out to a friend who put her in contact with our Volunteer Care Team.

    "I'm typically not a joiner, but I had attended a survivor luncheon right after my diagnosis and surgery," explained Margie, a two-year survivor of breast cancer. "During my recovery, I had an overwhelming feeling of isolation and loneliness. I didn't want others to feel the same."

    Once Margie was connected to the Volunteer Learning Center, she was off and running taking the necessary training sessions to be an active volunteer. "I trained as a Reach To Recovery visitor and as a Road To Recovery driver," she said. "I haven't driven yet for the Road program, but I have spoken about the need for new drivers to groups I meet with, and successfully recruited two new drivers in our area."  

    In addition to program-specific training, Margie has taken advantage of training on the Volunteer Learning Center to enhance her leadership skills, volunteer-staff partnership, and public speaking abilities. "I hope to be an example that something positive can come from something negative," she says. "I want to be a voice for those that can't find theirs."   

    "I encourage all potential volunteers to visit the Volunteer Learning Center and take a look at the training sessions that spark their interest," said Margie. "The session on Creating a Mission Statement was my favorite so far. The passion from the volunteer facilitators was moving."

    Margie also got involved in her local Making Strides Against Cancer and met her staff partner Cate Reid, community development manager. She is currently working on a fundraiser that marries her interest in blues music with her passion for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. The event is called ACS Blues meets Pink and will be held at Stonington Vineyards to raise money for her local Strides event.

    The American Cancer Society's Volunteer Learning Center provides a wide variety of online training opportunities for volunteers. To view current curriculum, visit the Volunteer Learning Center at

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