(Utica, NY – April 11, 2014) St. Elizabeth Medical Center has named Patricia Fletcher of Washington Mills Volunteer of the Year. Helen Kennerknecht of New Hartford received the St. Elizabeth Guild’s Eleanor Nelson Award, named for an active, former Guild member who passed away many years ago.
The two top volunteers were announced at the MedicalCenter’s annual Volunteer Breakfast on Friday, April 11, where special recognition pins were awarded to 47 people who have each logged from 100 to 46,000 hours of volunteer service. Barb Tocco, Day Habilitation Director, Arc Oneida-Lewis Chapter on Arnold Ave., was the guest speaker. The event’s theme was “Volunteers Make a World of Difference.”
“The MedicalCenter volunteers provide us with a great example of what people do to help their neighbors and this organization,” said Scott H. Perra, FACHE, president/CEO. “Those who give of their time and talents perform many tasks that we may not otherwise be able to provide. With the many challenges in healthcare today, St. Elizabeth’s volunteers are invaluable.”
Fletcher has been a volunteer for 19 years and has performed over 3,700 hours of service to the Medical Center. She currently volunteers in the Quality Management Department, where she
maintains credentialing files and initiates files for new staff members and physicians.
She is also a member of SEMC’s Patient and Family Advisory Council, the Professional Advisory Committee for St. Elizabeth Home Care and has served on the SEMC Foundation’s Lights of Love remembrance service and candle-lighting planning committees.
“In addition to her time at St. Elizabeth, Mrs. Fletcher also volunteers with Hospice and Abraham House,” said Grace Bouse, director of volunteers. “She was previously an employee of the MedicalCenter for over 35 years, and served as Director of Nursing.” She has four grown children, 12 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Kennerknecht has volunteered at SEMC for more than 23 years, accumulating over 7,346 hours of service. “She has been active in the Guild Bargain Shop, the Fashion Show, the Pillow Ladies group, Volunteer Office, Country Store and Christmas bazaar,” noted Mrs. Bouse. “She also made seven doll houses and dressed many dolls for various Guild fund-raising events.”
Kennerknecht was a licensed practical nurse at the former Utica State Hospital for 35 years, is a member of St. John the EvangelistChurch and a recipient of the Mother Lavender Award. She is a violinist who played with the Utica Symphony Orchestra, the Yesterday Senior Ensemble and is a member of the Utica Chamber Orchestra.
100 Hour Pin
Arc of Oneida-Lewis Chapter, Kirkland Day Habilitation
Meyer, Eve Marie
Foresti, Mary Joan
Arc of Oneida-Lewis Chapter, Arnold Ave Day Habilitation