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Governor's Service Awards Winners Announced
April 20, 2022
10 winners were selected for their commitment to helping others during the COVID-19 pandemic
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Community Service Commission announced 10 winners of the 2020/2021 Governor's Service Awards who supported significant needs and made a difference in food distribution, health or supporting other community issues during the pandemic.
“Through the historic challenges of the last couple of years, countless Michiganders stepped up to support their loved ones. On National Volunteer Recognition Day, we acknowledge those individuals, businesses, and organizations that went above and beyond, selflessly devoting their time and resources to make a difference for their fellow Michiganders,” said Gov. Whitmer. “The 10 individuals receiving the Governor’s Service Awards this year helped strengthen our communities by feeding families, administering vaccines, supporting local businesses, mentoring young people, and so much more. We should strive to live up to the example they have set and continue helping one another because tough times don’t last, but tough people do.”
The winners are:
- Jenna Arcidiacono (Rockford) handed out meals to those on the frontlines, gave $1,000 tips to restaurant workers and provided free meals for many people who lost loved ones to COVID-19.
- Priscilla Bordayo (Lansing) supported domestic and sexual assault survivors as numbers increased during the COVID-19 pandemic and mentored young women through her non-profit organization.
- Rebeka Islam (Sterling Heights) serves as an advocate for Asian American Pacific Islander rights and resources, and the COVID-19 pandemic further fueled her fire to help her community.
- Lisa Jahnke (Marquette) helped lead the Masks for Marquette volunteer initiative to make and distribute protective gear for medical personnel, frontline workers and school children.
- Phil Knight (Fenton), Executive director of the Food Bank Council of Michigan (FBCM), pursued partnerships, funding and food, enabling FBCM to provide 47% more food than any time in their history.
- Hugh Mahler (Birmingham) made a huge impact at Forgotten Harvest —one of the nation’s largest food rescue organizations— and aided food security efforts in southeast Michigan.
- Bobby Mukkamala (Flint) volunteered at test and vaccination sites and purchased several 3D printers to make hundreds of face masks for those in need of the personal protective equipment.
- Pat Munshaw (East Lansing), a retired 81-year-old registered nurse, volunteered to help deliver COVID-19 vaccine shots.
- Vivian Murray (Detroit) came out of retirement to allow the nurses of Sinai Grace Hospital to take breaks and mentored a group of teenagers who served meals to healthcare workers
- Delicia Pruitt (Bay City), Medical Director of Saginaw County, informed the public with medical COVID-19 information, served on the Protect Michigan Commission and the Food Security Council.
To view their full stories, visit Michigan.gov/GovernorsServiceAwards.
The 2020/2021 winners will be honored and recognized at the 2022 Governor’s Service Awards ceremony.
Nominations are open for the 2022 Governor’s Service Awards and more information can be found at Michigan.gov/GovernorsServiceAwards.
“I encourage Michiganders to nominate a friend, family member or fellow volunteer for the 2022 Governor’s Service Awards,” said Gov. Whitmer. “While these past few years have been challenging, this is a great way to honor so many Michiganders who responded with the grit and determination that defines our state. Michiganders from every corner of our state stepped up and worked hard to support their communities and help their neighbors. I look forward to reading the nominations and recognizing these dedicated Michiganders for their community service.”
To recognize those who go above and beyond, the Governor's Service Awards have been presented since 1994. For nearly 30 years, the Michigan Community Service Commission has supported Michigan volunteers, organizations and businesses that are committed to service and play a critical role in improving the lives of people and our communities.
“Michigan has a long tradition of service and helping others,” said Michigan Community Service Commission Executive Director Ginna Holmes. “We are proud to celebrate with those who have gone above and beyond to make a difference.”