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State seeks nominations for Governor's Volunteer Service Awards

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[January 15, 2013]  CHICAGO -- Gov. Pat Quinn and the Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service are accepting nominations for the fourth annual Governor's Volunteer Service Awards. These awards recognize individual volunteers through a statewide award program to highlight the importance of volunteerism and community service in the state of Illinois. For the first time, businesses that support service will also be recognized.

"Illinois is fortunate to have thousands of volunteers who donate their time and talents to help others and to build stronger communities," said Illinois Department of Human Services Secretary Michelle R.B. Saddler. "With these awards, we recognize those whose initiative, creativity and energy have made a positive change and has set an example for others."

Individual awards will be presented to one youth (18 years and under), one adult (19-54 years old) and one retiree/senior (55 years and older) in each of the commission's five service regions across the state: Northeast, Northwest, East Central, West Central and Southern. National Service Awards will be presented to one AmeriCorps and one Senior Corps member in each of the five regions. One award will be provided to a business in each of the five service regions. Within each category, applications will be given special priority based on these areas: economic opportunity, education, environmental conservation, disaster preparedness and response, health, and veterans affairs.

Nominations are due to Serve Illinois by Feb. 15. For the nomination forms and more information, visit Recipients will be selected and notified by March 30. The Serve Illinois Commission will host a luncheon to honor recipients on April 18 at the executive mansion in Springfield.

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The Serve Illinois Commission is a 40-member, bipartisan board appointed by the governor and administered by the Illinois Department of Human Services. Its mission is to improve Illinois communities by enhancing traditional volunteer activities and supporting national service programs, including the Illinois AmeriCorps program.

"All citizens have an opportunity to recognize their ability and help strengthen their communities through voluntary service. Through Serve Illinois, we expand volunteerism throughout rural, suburban and urban Illinois, and involve people of all backgrounds, cultures and ages," added Brandon Bodor, executive director of Serve Illinois.

[Text from Illinois Department of Human Services file received from the Illinois Office of Communication and Information]

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