November 10, 2015

2015 Person of the Year Award



Township Supervisor Annette Atkinson announced that Middle Smithfield Township residents may now submit nominations for the 2015 Person of the Year Award.  The annual award recognizes Middle Smithfield residents who have made a positive difference in the world and highlights the importance of altruism, philanthropy and community service.  The recipient of the award will receive $2,000 towards their cause*, while two finalists will receive $750 each toward their cause*.


Last year, at the award’s inception, Atkinson said “In life, there are spectators and then there are participants.  Watchers and doers.  We’re here to celebrate those who contribute, those who lead by example.  The Board of Supervisors created this award because we realized that it is the doers and their contributions that support the township’s mission to build a sense of community.  Life is not a spectator sport.”


The award is issued by Middle Smithfield Township’s Supervisors to recognize the contributions philanthropists make to our community.  The MST “Person of the Year” Award is available annually to individuals who meet or exceed requirements for volunteer service and have demonstrated exemplary citizenship through volunteering.  Nominees may have performed their volunteer work locally, nationally or internationally.

The nomination process is simple.  Submit the contact information for both the nominee and the nominator (yourself).  Write a brief, passionate, compelling story about your friend.  Tell something that distinguishes them as an individual and their contribution.  Then highlight how the nominee’s actions impact the lives of others.  Nomination forms (and details) may be downloaded at starting 10/27, or can be picked up at the township building.’


Last year’s winner, Laura Law, was recognized for her exceptional work as president and co-founder of Mady’s Angels. Mady’s Angels was established to honor Madyson Brendyl Law an exceptional daughter, sister, friend and student. Under Law’s leadership, Mady’s Angels has given back over $80,000 to the community.


Last year’s runner ups Lisa Baldwin and Melvyn Coon were both excellent candidates as well:


Lisa Baldwin is a teacher of English at Lehman Intermediate School, a volunteer with Joey’s Eagles, and a deacon and band member at the Bushkill Reformed Church. Lisa is an active volunteer with Joey’s Eagles, a non-profit organization that provides support for families with youth facing cancer or other serious chronic illnesses.  She fundraises for, organizes, and facilitates events for the organization. In addition to her work with Joey’s Eagles, she has also organized numerous community and international missionary projects to assist others in need.


Melvyn Coon is a dedicated and passionate volunteer at the Resica Falls Scout Reservation, a 4200+ acre nature preserve that serves as a campground for scouts. Since Melvyn moved up to East Stroudsburg in the 1960’s, he has generously devoted his time to serve the community. As a volunteer, Melvyn does everything from keeping the grounds, building latrines, to assembling and servicing the cots. He and his wife Margie even planted a garden on the grounds of the Reservation so that the scouts would have the opportunity to take part in gardening fresh vegetables. Those who have come to know and love Melvyn describe him as a humble man, whose influence in the lives of others is astounding ,without any thought of reward or accolade.

Nominations will be accepted through November 15, 2015, and the finalists will be notified by December 1st.  An independent panel of judges representing the district Judicial system, news media, local clergy, and business leaders from across Middle Smithfield will select the award recipients.  The Township Supervisors will host a dinner at the Whispering Pines Banquet Facility to honor the recipients at the annual New Year’s Eve Party on December 31st at Country Club of the Poconos Municipal Golf Course.


The deadline to nominate your Person of the Year is Dec 4. Make your nomination at