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Volunteer Profiles 2
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2015 Volunteer Awards Nominee Profiles
MarthaGrahame_web.jpg     JanieHanko_web.jpg   GwendolynJames_web.jpg 
Martha Grahame 
Nominated by Calvert Nature Society and the Calvert County Division of Natural Resources

On a sunny morning at Fishing Creek, a pair of manicured hands dipped expertly into a basin filled with oyster shells to catch tiny fish for a group of school children to observe. Those hands belong to Martha Grahame, a volunteer CHESPAX educator for the Calvert Nature Society and the Calvert County Division of Natural Resources. Later that morning, she led a troupe of school children down the boardwalk to learn about life in a tidal marsh.

Martha promotes children’s understanding of Calvert County’s natural resources. She introduces the natural world to our children and fosters a sense of wonder and discovery, helping them to learn the science behind what they see. Over the years, Martha has logged 2,000 volunteer hours at the county’s nature parks. In addition, she is a longtime member of the Calvert Nature Society Board of Directors and currently holds the office of treasurer.

Martha has spent countless hours for many organizations in our community including Calvert Library, the Maryland Library Association, the League of Women Voters and All Saints Episcopal Church. Martha’s can-do spirit and commitment to philanthropy and volunteerism make a difference wherever she goes, be it church, the library or county nature parks. Martha is a champion for the things that make Calvert County special.

  Janie Hanko
Nominated by Heather McGaffin and
Katie Allen

There are several words that can be used to describe Janie Hanko: wife, mother, grandmother and friend. However, a word used to describe her by most everyone who knows her in the community is "volunteer." After moving to Calvert County in 1983, she immediately became active volunteering in her Breezy Point community helping with everything from the annual 4th of July celebration to Christmas caroling.

She joined the PTA in 1989 and continued her service in several capacities at four public schools until her youngest daughter graduated in 2004. She spent several years on the Calvert County Meals on Wheels Board of Directors and was an active volunteer for both the county and state American Legion Auxiliaries. For many years she coordinated Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets for families in need and helped with Angel Tree programs and the Marine Corps Toys for Tots program.

Today, she enjoys volunteering to cook at Project Echo, working with the Calvert County Sheriff ’s Office "Shop with a Cop" program and volunteering at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church.

Janie shares her spirit and heart of gold with the community she loves so much.

Gwendolyn James
Nominated by
Cassandra D. Okwumabua

Gwen, a native of Calvert County, regularly volunteers at Calvert Pines Senior Center teaching arts and crafts to residents who always enjoy the variety of projects she shares. She also serves as a mentor to youth within the community, sharing her talents and skills with the Constellation Ministry as a volunteer for various community-based projects. As a member of the Bethel Way of the Cross Church, she volunteers as the congregation nurse.

Gwen is a member of the Concerned Black Women of Calvert County where she has been instrumental as a volunteer on its scholarship committee. She currently works at the YMCA camp in Edgewater and serves as the primary caregiver to her mom.


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