03 May 2013
NMHM staff and docents pose with Fort Detrick leadership at the annual Fort Detrick Volunteer Appreciation Ceremony. Left to right: U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command and Fort Detrick commander, Brig. Gen. (P) Joseph Caravalho Jr.; USAMRMC Command Sgt. Maj. Kevin B. Stuart; Andrea Rander; Gabriella Cantoni; NMHM tour and volunteer coordinator Gwen Nelmes; Regina Hunt; Carolyn Whittenburg; Delores Christie; Lisa Weed; Command Sgt. Maj. Cassandra D. Redd, USAG Fort Detrick Command Sgt. Maj.; Andi Sacks and Col. Allan J. Darden Sr., commander, USAG Fort Detrick
Museum Volunteers Recognized at Fort Detrick Volunteer Appreciation
By Melissa Brachfeld 

National Museum of Health and Medicine   

The National Museum of Health and Medicine and its volunteer were recently recognized for their hard work and dedication to serving the public at the annual Fort Detrick Volunteer Appreciation Ceremony on April 18, 2013.   

NMHM was awarded the Presidential Service Award for Most Volunteer Group Hours with approximately 1,450 hours.   Many of the Museum’s 16 volunteers won the Presidential Service Bronze Award for serving 100 to 249 hours in 2012, while Andi Sacks was awarded the Silver Award for contributing more than 250 hours. 

Andrea Rander, a volunteer for about five years, received the Volunteer of the Year Award for the Museum. Sacks, who has also volunteered at NMHM for about five years, received the Fort Detrick Volunteer of the Year Award. Gwen Nelmes, NMHM tour and volunteer coordinator, said she is proud of all of NMHM’s volunteers.  

 “I was amazed and honored that their service hours and hard work were recognized for 2012,” she said. “They are a great group!”   

Nelmes said Sacks “more than deserved” her Fort Detrick Volunteer of the Year Award, adding that she has a passion and talent for educating visitors about health and the history of military medicine. She has spent more than 625 hours volunteering for the Museum since 2009.   

“I was very excited to find out that Andi won the Fort Detrick Volunteer of the Year Award,” Nelmes said. 

“Andi is such an integral part of our volunteer group. She is dependable, passionate and supportive- she really goes above and beyond as a volunteer.”   Sacks said she felt “overwhelmed and very surprised” when she won the award.   

“It’s really such an honor to be recognized in that way,” she said. “I love volunteering at the museum- it’s one of my favorite places in the world.”   

Nelmes said Rander was named NMHM Volunteer of the Year because of her dedication to the Museum, which includes using her knowledge and skills to excite visitors about medical and scientific research. Rander is also a Red Cross volunteer at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.   

“I am so proud of Andrea,” Nelmes said. “She has been extremely supportive and enthusiastic of the Museum’s efforts. She is so welcoming to new volunteers, and she really inspires all of us to learn more about military medicine.”   

Rander said she was honored to receive the Volunteer of the Year award for the Museum.   “It was a total shock, but a nice surprise,” she said. “I really enjoy volunteering for the Museum. For me, it’s the amazing history that the Museum retains and how we, as volunteers without any formal training, are able to share that with visitors.”   

If you have an interest in history or medicine and are interested in becoming a volunteer at NMHM, contact Gwen Nelmes at 301-319-3312 or email medicalmuseum@amedd.army.mil. The next series of trainings for volunteers will begin in June 2013.

Posted by PAO

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