We Are Champions

Posted in: President's Press Box

Celebrating Champions seems to be a recurring theme during the last few weeks. At our meeting this week, we honored Sergeant Raymond Sanford, the NCO of the Year at Fort Detrick. Mike McGowan, our very own military cheerleader and Marine veteran, introduced Sgt. Sanford as the paragon of the best America has to offer. Sgt. Sanford was recognized for his exceptional learning-he has graduated with honors in every military school that he has attended, and his leadership. In May 2013, Sgt. Sanford will earn his Master’s Degree in Biomedical Science.  How blessed are we to have met such a champion!

Moving on, one of our club champions for recruiting new members, Jasmine Sneed, assisted me in inducting our newest Member, Charles Riser. If the name sounds familiar because of Charles’ commitment to the Frederick community through generous donations and time, it is because Charles is married to Sharon Riser and together they manage the top rated Paul Mitchell Partner School, The Temple. We are excited to have Charles join our team and share his talents of leadership, technology and service with us.

Our 60 second commercials were provided by Tom Dixon, Shannon Wallace and Connie Phillips. Tom was born and raised in Frederick. He rejoined our club after leaving a few years ago because of work commitments down the road.  He is excited to return and again spend time working at his parents’ business, Tuscarora Tennis Barn. Tom and his wife, Jaime hang out in Braddock Heights and members Michele and Ryan Daiger, are two of the 5 kids that enabled Tom to became an instant Dad when he married Jaime many years ago.

Shannon shared that he grew up in a tough area of   Newport News, Virginia and was blessed to be raised by his mother and grandmother. He attended Hampton University, played football there and completed studies in finance and marketing. After working in the finance field, Shannon decided to change his career to fitness and now runs 368 Athletics, at which Shannon coached many of our members who were part of the Fit for the Future Biggest Loser contest. Shannon is the proud Dad of daughter, Sydney.

Now Connie decided to give us a view of her life, titled the Good, the Bad and the Ugly, through some quick dialogue and revealing pics-loved the hairstyles and the big glasses of which I definitely can identify. Connie, who is one of our Past Presidents, was a twin. Sadly, her twin brother died much too young at the age of twenty. Connie loves to dance, has a great sense of humor, likes fast cars and has driven the Richard Petty NASCAR automobile 7 times, has overcome some serious health issues , and treasures her partner, her son and two grandsons. In 2011, Connie Phillips Insurance celebrated 25 years in business-a tribute to Connie’s leadership and hard work.

Peter Murray kicked off World Peace and Understanding Month asking for Applause For All because of our efforts to promote healthy communities in South Africa, Honduras and in Nicaragua. Peter then  introduced our speaker, Michael Judd, Director of Project Bona Fide in Nicaragua.  Our club, in partnership with the Southern Frederick Club and the Ausherman Foundation, has supported Project Bona Fide in the development of a community center. With our club’s donation of $9,500 this year,  funds will be used to outfit the kitchen appliances and begin the process of establishing a micro enterprise, Jamming and Canning, to sell local fruits and nuts. I am sure we will be hearing much more about the progress in Nicaragua and how we are making a difference. To see more, go to www.projectbonafide.com.

So there is much going on in our club. I had fun seeing how many knew of upcoming events on our calendar. My three “Vannas”-Niki, Jasmine and Amber-awarded the correct responses with chocolate candies. See if you know what is happening on these dates:

February 16, February 26, March 20, March 19-23, March 29, April 25-27 and May 10.

 Peace, Mary

united in peace.jpg