We are excited to recognize and honor special MACOA senior clients, volunteers, and friends in the Spotlight for recent awards, celebrations, and special occasions. We want to hear from you. If you or someone you know that's involved with MACOA is celebrating a special moment or milestone, please let us know! We want to share the news and showcase him or her here!
RONNIE WHITE SERVES SENIORS OVER 11 YEARS
Ronnie White has been an RSVP volunteer for 11 years. She is a retired insurance executive. She started as the secretary in the office and retired as an executive account manager. Go girl!! After her retirement she moved to Alabama and she spent a year traveling with her husband. Then, being a restless person, she knew she had much more to do and had a desire to give back to her community.
She began volunteering with Redland Elementary School. She serves in the library assisting the children and librarian. She also serves at the Wetumpka Nursing Home where she assists the patients with crafts, games and other activities. Ronnie is active in her church with various areas of service, including supplying food to the church food pantry.
For the last few years Ronnie has served on the RSVP Advisory Council for Elmore County. She has also served as the Advisory Council chair and on the Special Events Committee where she helps the coordinator for Elmore County plan and organize the wonderful recognition event for volunteers that is held annually.
Thank you, Ronnie, for all you do to help RSVP and your community.
DOROTHY HEARD STRONG IN FAITH AND SERVICE TO OTHERS
To define what is a Retired and Senior Volunteer you would need to include the name of Dorothy Heard. Dorothy has been volunteering in the RSVP Program for over 21 years, but that was not the beginning of her mission to help others. She has been helping others as far back as she can remember. She drove people to their jobs so that they could work and would help family and friends when they needed a place to stay.
Dorothy has strong faith and works hard for the Lord. These works include caring for and helping those in need by doing whatever she can. She travels around the town of Alexander City every day checking in on people and sharing her love for the Lord. She travels to the Bill Nichols Veterans Home and visits and talks with veterans several times each month. Dorothy takes people to pay their bills, grocery shop, doctor visits and to the pharmacy. She has brought people to the emergency room and stayed with them on several occasions. She goes into homes of mothers that need help watching their children and babies. She volunteers with the Alexander City Nutrition Center doing mobile meals.
Dorothy doesn't limit her volunteering on to helping those in need. She volunteers her time to clean her church and work on the church grounds. She attends city council meetings and is a strong advocate in helping the community. She is a great help at the Retired and Senior Recognition luncheons doing whatever needs to be done. Most people know Dorothy as the little lady that gives out homemade yarn crosses with a verse from the bible inserted in the pocket.
Dorothy is well known and loved in the Alexander City community.
LORRAINE HALL FAITHFUL MEMBER OF MACOA EAST
Lorraine was born in Spegner, AL in 1923. She has a daughter and a son; 1 grandson; 2 great-grandsons. Her husband was a prominent builder in the McGhee Estates and Cloverdale neighborhoods in Montgomery, AL. Lorraine is retired from the State of Alabama; Department of Education.
Lorraine enjoys cooking, traveling, and playing cards at MACOA East. She joined MACOA East 6 years ago when another member invited her to play cards. Lorraine has been a faithful card player and friend to MACOA East attendees for years.
Lorraine enjoys Eugene Price books which are stories about the Civil War.
Lorraine attends Woodland United Methodist Church and is happiest when she is surrounded by friends.
Something extra to know about Lorraine….Lorraine’s family served in World War I and II specifically in France and during the Normandy Invasion. Also, as Lorraine was finishing Business College, government agents came to Alabama from Washington, DC looking for secretaries to take back to Washington. Lorraine was selected and worked in Washington during World War II.
LINDA GOSWICK SERVES COOSA COUNTY
Linda Goswick was Manager of the West Coosa Senior Center for 22 years. During that time she was instrumental in setting up the center and provided transportation to seniors from throughout rural parts of Coosa County before and during her time as manager. She turned the center into a place where the local seniors can experience camaraderie, be creative and feel a sense of belonging, all by making it a social hub where senior lives could be enriched.
Linda has organized fundraisers for Relay-for-Life and for Coosa’s Cancer Outreach and Community Hope, or COACH. She has been an avid member of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program. She has served at Mount Moriah Baptist Church faithfully throughout her lifetime. She has also been very active in the Coosa Action Network, a civic group dedicated to helping schools meet the academic needs of their children.
Her various activities, often assisted by her husband, Ralph, have brought her accolades from the Coosa County Commission, the legislative delegation, and the Alabama Senior Citizens Hall of Fame. She was also named a Senior of Achievement in 2017 by MACOA.
Thanks, Linda, for all you do for our seniors!
SALLY LAWLER SERVES WITH PASSION
When asked why she volunteers Sally Lawler’s response is that she does it for one simple reason: to help people in need by serving at the agencies that meet their needs.
Sally is married with two grown children and grand children. She and her Air Force husband moved to Montgomery in the early 80’s. After many years of being an employee of the federal government, Sally retired in 2007 and began volunteering full time.
In 2014 she became an RSVP volunteer and started volunteering in the MACOA Welcome Center answering phones and handing out frozen meals. She now works in Senior Services where she does data entry, in the RSVP Department where she maintains the volunteer and coordinator files, and she also assists the office manager by organizing material for board meetings other projects as needed.
Sally also volunteers at M.O.M.—Medical Outreach Ministries. Sally divides her volunteer time between MACOA and M.O.M. She serves about 12 hours a week at each station. Like MACOA, she wears many hats while at M.O.M. She started as a data entry person; now she greets clients, answers phones, calls patients, takes prescription refills over the phone, and files. She says time flies while at M.O.M., as there is always more to do than there are hours in the day.
Sally serves at her volunteer stations with enthusiasm, compassion, and joy. Thank you, Sally, for all you do for the citizens in our community!
MARY ALICE WAITS SERVES SENIORS FOR 14 YEARS
Mary Alice Waits has been a volunteer in our Archibald Center for 14 years. Her cousin was a member of the Center and invited her to join. She began volunteering in the Meals on Wheels kitchen helping to serve and cook. After staff was hired, she moved into the Archibald Center to volunteer as an administrative assistant on Monday afternoons where she currently is today. Mary Alice also volunteers to take frozen meals once a week to a Meals on Wheels client on the waiting list. She is also involved in knowing her genealogy through Ancestry.com tracing her heritage back to the 1500’s.
Mary Alice is a member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and a member of the New Era Club. Her grandfather settled in Fort Davis, AL where she was born. Mary Alice was married for 10 years has no children but has 9 nieces and nephews. She has traveled many places including Europe, Mexico and Hawaii.
KEN CARRICK CELEBRATES 20
YEARS OF SERVICE
We are proud to spotlight RSVP volunteer and friend of MACOA Ken Carrick, who has just been recognized for his 20 years of service to the River Region United Way and for his help in raising $110,000,000 for United Way agencies!
Ken has been an RSVP volunteer since 1998. During this time he has served as chair and ex-officio of the Montgomery County RSVP Advisory Council, a docent with the Department of Archives and History, on the RSVP S.W.A.T. (Senior Workers Available Today) Team that assists with many different projects, with Partners in Education at Dalraida Elementary School reading to students and providing monthly lunches for the teachers, The Salvation Army, The Red Cross, as a councilor of Medicare Part D, and in many other areas of service. 11,403 hours later, he is still going!
Ken was recognized as a Senior of Achievement by MACOA in 2005. He is also a long time member of Montgomery’s chapter of Good Morning, Kiwanis. He has been married for 63 years to his wife Caryll, who is also a long time RSVP volunteer. They have two children, five grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.
Thanks Ken, for all you do for us!
RSVP Volunteer Virginia White Provides
over 21,347 of Service
Mrs. Virginia White is a retired RN, an heirloom seamstress, excellent cook, and true lover of people. She is a mother of two sons and one daughter. She has been an RSVP volunteer since 2002.
Miss Virginia worked as a tracheotomy nurse while her husband was a student at the University of North Carolina. She joined the Senior Advantage Program at Baptist East Hospital over 20 years ago. In addition to nursing she also worked many years for the Bernina Sewing Machine Company and was able to incorporate these skills into the Teddy Bear Program of Baptist East, allowing hundreds of newborns to take home a handmade, cuddly teddy to keep for years to come.
After retiring as a nurse, Miss Virginia was asked to develop a program for Cardiac Rehabilitation at Baptist South. Once a cardiac patient is discharged his or her physician might recommend rehab. If the patient is a candidate for rehab and wants counseling the physician may ask Miss Virginia to discuss the benefits of rehab to the patient. This important step performed by a volunteer saves the staff hours of time but also shows the hospital’s concern for the long term recovery of its patients.
Since 2002 Virginia White has contributed 21,347 hours as an RSVP volunteer. Thanks for serving, Virginia White!!
BERTHA BROWN SERVES SENIORS
Bertha Brown is a 21 year native of Millbrook, AL. She has been married to David Brown for 49 years. They have three children and six grandchildren.
Before becoming a volunteer at MACOA in May 2017, Bertha was a store manager at Verizon Wireless. Bertha is currently the volunteer at the Welcome Desk on Friday mornings, but has recently agreed to volunteer on Wednesday mornings as well.
Bertha’s hobbies include reading, cooking, traveling and volunteering. Her favorite book is The Bible. Her favorite food is salad and her favorite place to travel to is Denver CO where her son lives.
JACQUELINE LACEY SERVES WITH PASSION
Our Senior Spotlight features Mrs. Jacqueline Lacey, a member of the 2017 Class of MACOA Seniors of Achievement. She has more than 5995 hours with the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) as an Elmore county volunteer at the Wetumpka Food Pantry and the Black Heritage Museum. Mrs. Lacey’s outreach to others is also reflected at her church, Mount Canaan Baptist Church, where she serves as Mission Society president, Sunday School teacher, and trustee. She is active in the Order of the Eastern Star, Elmore Rehoboth District, and the “Thread My Needle” Quilting Club of the Black Heritage Museum that she helped found and for which she has received national recognition. She is a long-time voting poll worker, provides meals and transportation to those in need, and cares for youth who are in trouble. Thank you, Miss Jackie, for all you do!!
PAUL SWEAT SERVES UP STRETCH AND FLEX AND AT THE CULINARY CAPER
Mr. Paul Sweat is an Auburn University graduate. He is married to Joyce who will be recognized in the 2017-2018 Seniors of Achievement. He is a retired accountant. Mr. Sweat began teaching exercise at the Central YMCA and at several local churches. He got started with the Montgomery Area Council On Aging by teaching stretching classes in all of the surrounding senior centers 2 days a week. Now his students gather at the Archibald Center for Stretch & Flex classes each week. Class size averages 10 students per week. For the last 14 years, Mr. Sweat has been a server during the Culinary Caper and he also teaches exercise for the Respite Ministry at First United Methodist Church, Montgomery.
Paul and Joyce have 3 children (2 living); 4 grandchildren; 3 great-grandchildren.
Loveless Johnson receives
Public Safety Honorary Award for the
2017 Alabama Senior Citizens Hall of Fame
Mr. Loveless Johnson, RSVP volunteer since 2003, has been named recipient of the Public Safety Honorary Award for the 2017 Alabama Senior Citizens Hall of Fame. In 2016 Mr. Loveless also received Volunteer of the Year Award in the senior category by Hands on River Region and was also a MACOA Senior of Achievement.
Loveless Johnson was born and raised in Hope Hull and attended Ramer High School. While a youth his father trained him and his brothers to cut hair—a useful skill that helped put him through two years of college until he was drafted into military service. After an honorable discharge he joined the National Guard Reserves and was able to earn a Master’s Degree in Education at Alabama State. He taught math and science to 5th and 6th graders for 13 years then pursued a career in criminal justice. He became a corrections officer and worked for the state of Alabama for 24 years. With his two children grown and out of the house with children of their own, he began to think about retirement.
Retirement came easy for Mr. Johnson—he knew exactly what his next “career” would be: a volunteer. He has always been a person with a giving heart, maintaining the lawn at his church, using his licensed barbering skills to cut friends’ hair, helping seniors in the neighborhood by giving them fresh vegetables from his garden, or giving them financial assistance when needed. With more time to devote to service, Mr. Johnson began looking for the right place to volunteer.
His wife Mary came home one day and said she heard of a new volunteer opportunity called Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) through the Montgomery Police Department. VIPS, one of the areas where the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) places volunteers, is a national program that is in partnership with the White House Office of the USA Freedom Corps. It came into being after the 911 attacks and it provides volunteer assistance to local police. VIPS programs were forming all over the country, including Montgomery. Mr. Johnson became the 46th VIP in August of 2003.
After six weeks of extensive training where he learned how to respond in crisis, deal with the public, and to react to the scene of a traffic accident, Mr. Johnson began working patrol. He and his first partner, Richard “Sparky” Adams patrolled neighborhoods and performed vacation home checks. Loveless and Sparky, as they became known, was the team that called the police after witnessing a purse snatching in the old Normandale shopping center. In 2006 they also discovered the mortally wounded officer Keith Houts on Decatur Street. Because of their quick action officer Houts’ family was able to tell him good bye before he died three days later.
Loveless Johnson now manages the traffic division where he makes sure all VIPS cars are properly maintained. He is also in charge of recruiting new VIPS. When asked what his words of advice would be to someone who is retiring Mr. Johnson says it is important to stay active.
PAT BARTOSZEWICZ RECEIVES THE
GOLDEN BOOK OF DEEDS AWARD
RSVP Volunteer Pat Bartoszewicz has received the National Exchange Club’s (Montgomery, Alabama Chapter) Golden Book of Deeds Award for 2017. This award is given annually by each Chapter in the U.S. Criteria for this award includes a person who is sincere about helping the community, has an exceptional track record of continued, unselfish giving and who enjoys volunteering to help others. This prestigious award is designed for someone who deserves acclaim, but rarely receives it.
Pat Bartoszewicz has been an RSVP volunteer since 2003. She has 7,689 lifetime hours and has served in Disaster Services in mock disaster training, Education as a volunteer reading coach for accelerated reading students, and in Healthy Futures as a volunteer in the Archibald Activities Center where senior adults participate in exercise, dance and computer classes. She is also a founding member of the Mad Hatters, a group that makes stocking caps at Christmastime for MACOA’s Title III Meals on Wheels clients.
THANK YOU AND BEST WISHES TO
It is truly impossible to say good bye to those that we love and hold dear—those people who are outstanding examples of what it means to be a servant. That is why, even though he and his wife Annette are moving to Florida, we won’t say good bye to Joe Sutton.
A former member of the Board of Directors, Joe has been a part of the MACOA family since 1998 when he became an RSVP volunteer. He was asked to serve on the RSVP Montgomery Advisory Council in 2002 and named chairman in 2005. As an RSVP volunteer he has served in disaster preparedness and in community and economic development, but his most memorable areas of volunteer service are with VIPS and the Alabama Department of Archives and History.
On April 15, 2003, Joe became one of the original 13 volunteers that joined VIPS—Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS). RSVP partnered with the Montgomery Police Department to establish the program locally. RSVP recruits, screens, and supports the volunteers in VIPS. VIPS is one of five Citizen Corps partner programs formed after the terrorist attacks in 2001. Joe served in the detective division, in recruiting, and in the neighborhood watch program. He and two other VIPS maintained a database of information on 10,000 weapons retrieved at crime scenes. Now, thanks to Joe Sutton, when a detective needs to look up details on a confiscated weapon used in a crime, he or she can look up the information on a computer and not through dusty, faded index cards. Click here for more!