2021 Volunteer Recognition Awards

2021 Volunteer Recognition Awards

Galatti Award

Established in 1983, the Galatti Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service honors AFS Volunteers whose commitment and dedication to the organization have advanced the mission and goals of AFS. This award honors AFS volunteers whose commitment and exceptional dedication have advanced the mission and goals of AFS at the grass-roots level.

Mark Smith of the Milwaukee AT has been an AFSer since 1966. He has supported host families, arranged a “speaker’s bureau” for the students to do presentations in the community, and has created a newsletter for circulation around the community drumming up interest for volunteers to join AFS.  He has implemented a Cultural Chat at the high school where students do a short 5-7 minute presentation about themselves and their country in a small group setting to the foreign language students at school. Mark is always open to new ideas promoting AFS.

Peggy and Art Howe Award

Introduced in 2016, the Peggy and Art Howe Award celebrates AFS families who provide exceptional, outstanding service to AFS by furthering the AFS Mission as a family. Art and Peggy Howe volunteered for AFS for more than six decades, and this award honors them.

Jim & Erin Linhares, along with their sons, have been devoted to the success of students and host families in the Columbia Pacific At. Their role as chapter chairs and AFS promoters at local high schools and community events has made their chapter a vibrant contributor to the community and the COLPAC team. Their son, Kyle, coordinates with the Oregon Governor to allow the students to act as Pages for Senators and Representatives for a day, participating in, and doing actual work as Pages. The Linhares Family are dedicated, steadfast, and devoted volunteers who make a difference in the lives of students, host families and other AFS volunteers.

Young Volunteer

Established in 2015, the Young AFS Volunteer Award for Outstanding Service recognizes AFS volunteers under the age of 30 whose exceptional contributions to the organization have made a difference in advancing the mission and goals of AFS.

Terra D’Antonio Dudley is a Returnee in the Columbia Pacific ATAs Hosting Orientations Coordinator, Terra recognizes the value and importance of having an intercultural exchange experience and how those experiences can impact your life. Terra recognizes the impact and value of our programs in the world, and how our programs can continue to be delivered in a meaningful way despite circumstances.

Mission Award

The AFS-USA Mission Award recognizes an outstanding volunteer who has made a significant impact in promoting the core values and mission of AFS through their leadership.

As Chair of Sierra San Joaquin, Nancy Howard has been an integral part of the Area Team for over 4 decades.  She is a dedicated leader who is passionate about world peace, and empowers our team to bring the values of AFS to every student, family and volunteer. This speaks to her undying faith in the AFS mission – to bring peace and understanding to people of all nations through the high school student exchange experience and all the families, volunteers and communities in which they live, here and abroad.

Emerging Leader Award

The AFS-USA Emerging Leader Award recognizes an individual who shows potential as a future leader within the AFS volunteer structure of chapters or teams. This award is intended to recognize emerging leaders regardless of their age.

Katie Caporossi has been the Hosting Coordinator for the Northeast Ohio AT and is a driving force in recruiting host families. Her efforts help our community grow culturally in accepting diversity and understanding differences. She inspires, motivates and is well-respected within the Northeast Ohio Area Team. Every day, Katie easily transfers the values and mission of AFS to her career and other aspects of her life.  It is who she is, a true example of what AFS is all about.

Dream Team Award

The Dream Team Award recognizes AFS-USA Teams for exceptional and outstanding service that benefits AFS-USA volunteers in more than one area of volunteer development and recognition.

The Missouri Gateway (MOGY) Area Team works well together and its creativity is sparked by the support of a welcoming, enthusiastic environment where everyone wants to be a part of the effort. MOGY has made significant progress regarding diversity and inclusion of it’s volunteers from ethnic, racial, LGBTQ+, generational, gender, and other perspectives. This success has led to the team’s ability to bring in more diverse host families too. The team also actively mentors young volunteers, recruiting them to help with orientations and then expand into other roles.  All are included in a meaningful way, because they bring in different perspectives and are particularly adept at connecting with host students. The MOGY team has a defined volunteer committee who dedicate their time almost exclusively to helping the Volunteer Coordinator.

You can see a recording of the Volunteer Recognition Awards here. AFS-USA is so very fortunate to have volunteers  to help drive its mission! The Volunteer Recognition Committee strives to honor all volunteers for their extraordinary service locally, nationally, and globally. We congratulate you and all our volunteers for the truly amazing work that you do to spread peace throughout the world.