Melissa Callison named United Way 'Volunteer of the Year'

The United Way of Jackson County has named Melissa Callison the 2011 United Way Volunteer of Year.  
The award was presented recently at a reception before approximately 100 United Way volunteers and staff at Daryl’s Downtown in Jackson.  
Callison is the 40th recipient of the award, instituted in 1972 to recognize the accomplishments of the many volunteers in Jackson County.
Phil Bickel, 2010 United Way Volunteer of the Year, presented Callison with the award, citing her outstanding contributions as chair and founding member of the Women’s Leadership Council, an affinity group of United Way of Jackson County.  In just a year’s time, she and her team have grown to over 80 active members, contributed over 400 hours of volunteer service, and raised nearly $30,000 to help women and children in Jackson County succeed.
In addition, she is a long time United Way supporter and campaign volunteer, having served on the steering committee for Consumers Energy’s corporate campaign in Jackson County, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars to help Jackson County families in need.  
“I’m so very proud to receive this honor,” she said.  
“I’m so lucky to work for a company that supports and encourages us to volunteer. But I really feel that I’m accepting this award on behalf of all United Way volunteers, and in recognition of all the hard work each and every one puts in to make Jackson County a great place to live.”
Other nominees for United Way Volunteer of the Year recognized at the event include:
Dr. Amy Schultz – director of Prevention and Community Health, Allegiance Health;
Mike Robbins, tax principal and director of Tax, Rehmann Group;
Jake Norris, supervisor production systems, Michigan Automotive Compressor, Inc. (MACI);
Dennis Parshall, material handler, Consumers Energy, president, UWUA Local 101;
Carolyn Bloodworth, secretary/treasurer, Consumers Energy Foundation.
“Community members interested in volunteering for United Way or any Jackson County nonprofit can register on the United Way website,,” a spokesperson said.  
“Simply clicking on the words ‘volunteer now’ on the homepage will connect potential volunteers with dozens of volunteer opportunities and local agencies.”
The United Way of Jackson County is entering its 77th year of serving the greater Jackson community.  
It supports more than 50 different programs and services that provide thousands of Jackson County residents the opportunity for a better life.  
It is locally governed by a volunteer board of directors, chaired by Ray Snell, Realtor, Exit Realty.

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