RICHMOND, Va., April 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Dominion celebrates its volunteer program and some of the individuals that make them a success by recognizing 12 employees from six states as the 2011 "Volunteers of the Year."
"I could not be more proud of the good deeds our volunteers are performing in the community and the goodwill they are creating as representatives of Dominion," said Thomas F. Farrell II, chairman, president and chief executive officer.
The volunteers gave of their time and talent in prison ministry, youth mentorship, renovation projects and various other programs that improve people's lives. They were selected by a panel of community leaders and join more than 270 previous honorees.
They will be honored April 16 in Richmond and April 25 in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, near Akron.
This year's winners are:
- Kempis Brown, a supplier diversity specialist in Supply Chain, Richmond, Va. As a 15-year member and current leader of St. Paul's Baptist Church Prison Ministry group, he has ministered to the spiritual, physical and intellectual needs of inmates in Richmond and Henrico County area correctional facilities. He and his fellow group members strive to fulfill their goal of saving one life at a time with positive reinforcement using Scripture.
- Joe Chepke, a gas operations supervisor in Akron, Ohio. Committed to the young athletes he coaches in baseball and basketball, he founded a college scholarship fund in memory of his late father to help students from Austintown Fitch High School continue their education. He began coaching with Austintown Community Baseball in 2003, and has since served as league vice president and president.
- Tommy Daughtry, an electric distribution construction supervisor in Roanoke Rapids, N.C. He served as co-leader of a renovation project for Hannah's Place, a home for battered and abused women, which included window replacement and insulation installation. He also helped build two Habitat for Humanity houses and made improvements at local church and high school softball fields, and at a volunteer fire department and police shooting range.
- Tony Fox, a retired customer service technician, Wickliffe, Ohio. As a long-time volunteer coach at Glenville High School, he has mentored hundreds of at-risk youth, helping instill in them discipline, the value of education, teamwork, love and compassion. He has helped more than 100 of his players receive college scholarships, 10 of whom have played in the National Football League.
- Phyllis Hinterer, director of area transmission operations, Weston, W.Va. She volunteers more than 200 hours annually to the West Virginia State Livestock Roundup. She takes vacation time to work the four-and-a-half day event, which draws up to 200 participants. She has served on the organization's board for nine years, president for six years, and treasurer for two years. She also has received recognition as a 4-H All Star for her volunteer service to the organization and the young people it serves.
- Harold Jones, a senior control specialist, Surry, Va. He devotes countless hours to educational activities that benefit area schools and students. He serves on the Surry County School Board and on Surry High School's Career and Technical Education Advisory Committee. He works with Surry Power Station's work force planning group and school officials to ensure local students receive information on how to prepare for future career opportunities.
- Stephanie McDonald, an associate training specialist, Chester, Va. She has worked on a Habitat for Humanity House, delivered Meals on Wheels during her lunch hours, and collected school supplies for the Stuff the Bus campaign. She helped coordinate a Project Plant It! video, and led a United Way effort by arranging speakers and creating flyers and email communications to promote fundraising efforts. She also serves on the fundraising committee for Flagler House at St. Joseph's Villa Children's Home.
- Dennis Mello, a nuclear plant equipment operator, Waterford, Conn. While his Dominion Virginia Power colleagues were coping with the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, he was busy organizing emergency medical operations to deal with Irene's impact in his home community of Westerly, R.I. He is a certified emergency medical technician and firefighter, and shares his expertise with Dominion, serving at Millstone Power Station as fire brigade lead, EMT, high angle rescue technician and confined space rescue team member.
- Andrea Mitchell, a philanthropy coordinator, Pittsburgh, Pa. She serves on the board of Wilkinsburg Community Ministry, participating in programs like the Angel Food Ministries. She coordinated a joint Dominion-Wilkinsburg Community Ministry back-to-school drive that supported 30 area families. She has coordinated employee participation in the American Cancer Society's Daffodil Days; and the Highmark Healthy Walk, raising more than $1,000 for Camp Variety, which serves children with physical and mental disabilities.
- Linda O'Neal, a stock helper, Virginia Beach, Va. She and two coworkers formed an office volunteer group, "The Cherished Ones," to adopt one rehabilitation facility each year. The group focused on Heritage Hall Health Care and Rehabilitation Center last year. She organized silent auctions to provide residents new sweatpants, T-shirts and socks, DVDs, CDs and games. She also provided holiday baskets and Christmas gifts for the 120 residents, and school supplies and coats for the students at Seatack Elementary School.
- Rob Rice, a regulation-load research manager, Richmond, Va. As a veteran search and rescue pilot, he shares his love of flying with the young Cadets of Civil Air Patrol's Hanover County Squadron. He has flown missions to search for downed airplanes and has participated in ground searches for missing persons. Before Hurricane Irene hit, he and others flew planes out of harm's way. In the first 48 hours after the storm, he flew damage assessment patrols for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, and then returned to work, volunteering for long hours of service restoration work.
- Wayne Stanley, a lead maintenance operator, St. Paul, Va. In April 2011, he organized Virginia City Hybrid Energy Center's employee volunteers to help tornado-stricken families in nearby Glade Spring. He recruited fellow employees to help clear debris, cut trees and provide financial assistance. Those tornado relief efforts served as the foundation for the power station's Volunteer Activities Team, which he leads. He and fellow volunteers conduct one community outreach event per month.
In 2011, Dominion, its charitable foundation and employees invested more than $21 million and nearly 160,000 volunteer hours in programs that help improve the quality of life for people in the communities where they work and live.
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 27,500 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation's largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's website at www.dom.com.
Note to Editors: For photographs of the winners, please visit http://www.dom.com/about/media-downloads.jsp to learn more about Dominion's volunteer program, go to http://www.dom.com/about/community/volunteering-in-the-community.jsp.