Montgomery County Names Five Individuals and Organizations as Recipients of the 11th Annual Montgomery Serves Awards, the County’s Highest Honor for Service and Volunteerism

by MCS Staff
Montgomery County has named five individuals and organizations as recipients of the 11th annual Montgomery Serves Awards, the County’s highest honor for service and volunteerism. This year’s honorees represent volunteers dedicated to programs including social justice and educational advocacy, safety-net healthcare services and outreach to vulnerable populations.

The awards were presented at a ceremony on Wednesday, June 15, at the Silver Spring Civic Building, emceed by Andrea Roane, the long-time anchor at WUSA-9. County Executive Mark Elrich and other County officials and dignitaries presented awards.

“Volunteers make a real difference in Montgomery County,” said Faith McNeill, manager of the Montgomery County Volunteer Center. “Volunteers have stepped up during the COVID-19 pandemic. Likewise, there have long been County residents selflessly serving critical needs throughout our region every day of every year. The Montgomery Serves honorees exemplify that amazing spirit.”

This 2022 Montgomery Serves Awards recognize volunteers in the following categories:

The Roscoe R. Nix Distinguished Community Leadership Awards honor community leaders, change agents and role models who have made extraordinary contributions to Montgomery County over the course of their lives. These awards are designated by the County Executive. This year’s awards will go to:

  • Nancy Kopp, who served as treasurer for the State of Maryland from 2002-2021 and as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates representing Bethesda and Chevy Chase from 1975-2002.
  • Mona Negm, founder and president of the American Muslim Senior Society, who has advocated at local, state and national levels for meaningful, culturally diverse engagement for the underserved and marginalized.
  • Kenneth Nelson, who has contributed to the well-being and improvement of Montgomery County by serving as pastor of Seneca Community Church, director of business and community outreach at Montgomery College and in numerous organizations.

Neal Potter Path of Achievement Awards are presented to residents 60-and-over for lifetime volunteer service. This year’s awards will go to:

  • Charlotte Holliday of Germantown. She is a music educator and founder of the Tacy Foundation, which empowers children and teens to share hope with hospital patients, military veterans, senior citizens, and disadvantaged youth through performances, music recording projects and music mentoring programs.
  • The Honorable Chung K. Pak, chief administrative law judge of the Maryland Office of Administrative Hearings. The Gaithersburg resident has worked tirelessly to provide a strong voice to some of the most needy and powerless in the community and State.

Volunteer of the Year Awards recognize outstanding volunteer service performed during the previous calendar year. The winners in the three categories of the awards:

  • Volunteer of the Year: Schai Schairer. The Silver Spring resident volunteers at the Maryland Correctional Institute for Women (MCIW), working with marginalized, vulnerable women who are often overlooked.
  • Youth Volunteer of the Year: Samantha Jayasundera. The Rockville resident, who is a senior at Montgomery Blair High School, is an advocate for education and equity on local, national and international levels.
  • Volunteer Group of the Year: Mercy Health Clinic Volunteer Medical Providers. The group of physicians represent the core of the clinic’s operations, providing primary and specialty care at no cost to low-income, uninsured patients in Montgomery County.

The Montgomery County Volunteer Center organizes these prestigious annual awards and helps individuals and groups find volunteer opportunities year-round. Learn more about the Volunteer Center and its annual awards at www.montgomeryserves.org.

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