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Seven volunteer staff teams honored

Partnerships between volunteers and staff members set the American Cancer Society apart from other organizations. These partnerships are built on relationships, where each partner has a different but equally important role. Both are critical to success at every level.

The Selection Workgroup is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Volunteer Staff Partnership Award. These partnerships demonstrate volunteers and staff successfully impacting our mission by increasing community engagement, growing revenue, impacting mission outcomes, enhancing stewardship, and/or creating new opportunities.

Let’s meet our outstanding award winners and congratulate them on a job well done! 

  • Carolyn Rhee, chair, Los Angeles Central Coastal Area Board, and Dan Witzling, executive director, Culver City, CA – West Region: For the past five years, Carolyn and Dan have worked together to create strong and diversified volunteer leadership. With Dan’s help, Carolyn, LA Central Coastal Area Board chair, has successfully opened doors and engaged with new companies, organizations, and volunteers. Dan and Carolyn together lead one of the most innovative Boards in the West Region. The level of mutual respect built between Carolyn and Dan contributes to overall success of this team.
  • Mike Shult, retired banker, director of athletic operations, Edgewood College, and Amy Rohrer, senior director, Distinguished Events, Madison, WI – North Region: Mike and Amy have built their relationship on trust over the last six years through the Coaches vs. Cancer program. Amy worked with Mike to add a Shoot Down Cancer event at Edgewood College to increase their involvement with ACS. Mike gives of his time, talent, and finances because he believes in our mission and wants to inspire others to do the same. Because of their partnership, Mike continues to be involved in Coaches vs. Cancer, as well as advocacy, the Laureate Society, Coaches vs. Cancer galas, and motivating others to be involved in our mission.
  • Marty Futscher, Relay For Life of St. James Parish participant, and Anne Bates, senior community development manager, New Orleans, LA – South Region: Marty and Anne have worked closely together over the last two years to successfully strengthen the relationship between ACS and all Nucor Steel employees. As a team, they have recruited additional Nucor employees to participate in fundraising initiatives and Nucor vendors to support the annual golf tournament. Anne also encouraged Marty to join the 2019 class of Voices of Hope to give him a platform to speak about his personal cancer journey. Together, Anne and Marty have supported a Relay team raising more than $400,000, helped find lodging in Memphis and Houston for a family in need, and created a relationship built on trust and communication.
  • Terry Hurst, Road To Recovery driver, and Rachael Cook, program manager, Mission Delivery, Southfield, MI – North Central Region: Terry has been a Road To Recovery driver for the past five years, working alongside Rachael as his staff partner. Their partnership has had a positive impact on driver recruitment by strengthening local driver relationships and allowing us to provide more free rides to patients. Rachael recognizes Terry as a valuable volunteer, invests in his development, and finds him opportunities to fit his interests. Throughout their partnership, Terry and Rachael have found ways to impact the mission through driver recruitment, advocacy, and fundraising to support our mission. 
  • Brad Fletcher, team captain and Relay For Life of Front Royal-Warren County Bingo manager, and Aimee Nuwer, senior community development manager, Winchester, VA – Northeast Region: In the last three years, Brad and Aimee developed a close rapport, shared new ideas, and challenged one another for the benefit of our mission. This team actively recruits a strong volunteer committee for a weekly Bingo event in Front Royal, supporting the Relay For Life of Front Royal-Warren County. This is a popular weekly event that the community enjoys. Brad and Aimee have developed a relationship that allows both to thrive in their roles and identify strategies for success. 
  • Pridgen, CEO, Haley Automotive Group, and Danette Hodges, senior development manager, Distinguished Events, Glen Allen, VA – Southeast Region: Doug and Danette have worked tirelessly to create a partnership built on mutual trust and respect while collaborating the past two years. With Danette’s help, Doug lead the Richmond Cattle Baron’s Ball as Presenting Sponsor and chair to a net revenue increase of $350,000 from 2016 to 2018. Their efforts to increase community engagement by creating diversity among the Board of Advisors made this event what it is today. Their teamwork not only attracted new volunteers, but also cultivated new donors to help further our mission. Their partnership reflects the true friendship they have built with each other.
  • Sandi Cassese, vice chair, ACS CAN Board of Directors, and Lights of Hope Leadership Team – Global Headquarters: Sandi and the Lights of Hope Leadership Team worked closely together in planning all aspects of fundraising for the Lights of Hope event. Sandi alongside her staff partners recruited hundreds of volunteers to execute the day-of-event needs. This team held webinars for volunteers, offered themselves for coaching calls, emailed volunteers to recognize their achievements, and provided support to hundreds of volunteers who are a part of Lights of Hope. Sandi’s openness to work with a team of partners and her support of them was just as critical as the staff support for Sandi.


The Volunteer Staff Partnership Award recognizes a volunteer and staff team that models a successful partnership to positively impact our mission. The presentation of these awards will take place within each Region, allowing the winners to celebrate with their local ACS family.

If you have any questions about the Volunteer Staff Partnership Award, please visit the Volunteer Recognition page on My Society Source or contact Caira Turner, senior volunteer recognition manager.

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