4ID, Fort Carson honor volunteers

By Anissa Connell, Fort Carson Public Affairs OfficeMay 3, 2023

4ID, Fort Carson honor volunteers
FORT CARSON, Colo. — Brig. Gen. James Dooghan, deputy commanding general for maneuver, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson, presents a volunteer award to Donna Swanson, Warrior’s Warehouse, April 19 during the annual Volunteer Recognition Ceremony. (Photo Credit: Anissa Connell) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT CARSON, Colo. – Volunteers across the Mountain Post were recognized for helping improve the quality of life for Soldiers and Family members during Fort Carson’s annual volunteer award recognition ceremony on Apr. 19 at the Elkhorn Catering and Conference Center.

Volunteers on Fort Carson contribute nearly 200,000 hours annually and is equivalent to $4 million in workforce cost and support.

There are over 6,000 volunteers on Fort Carson who serve within the American Red Cross, Army Community Service, Soldier and Family Readiness Groups, and many other area agencies and organizations both on and off post.

“The volunteers who we are going to recognize today are an essential part of the community in more than one way,” said Brig. Gen. James Dooghan, deputy commanding general for maneuver, 4th Infantry Division and Fort Carson. “They don’t have a special time machine to create more time, they use the same 24-hour day that we do. They go to school, they work, they support family and extended family and give what little time they have left to others.”

Award categories included Fort Carson exemplary volunteer service award, Fort Carson volunteer of the year – adult, Fort Carson youth volunteer of the year, and Fort Carson steadfast and loyal volunteer hall of fame induction.

A full list of award recipients can be found at the bottom of the article.

Volunteers spend several hours a week dedicating their free time to helping Soldiers, Family members, and veterans in and around the Mountain Post.

“Our volunteers don’t do it for the recognition. We want to recognize their efforts and contributions to the community because they’re absolutely valuable. It also inspires others to consider coming into the ranks of volunteering,” said Celsie Day, program manager for Fort Carson Army Volunteer Corps.

Retired Air Force veteran, Donna Swanson, was the recipient of the Fort Carson Volunteer of the Year Award for Warrior’s Warehouse and had over 1,900 hours volunteered.

Swanson started volunteering eight years ago and said, “Volunteer of the year is important to me because I work very hard. I’ve had probably 1,900 hours, but I do this because I love the Soldiers.”

Following her time in the military, Swanson was looking to do something special.

Swanson also received the Department of the Army Public Service Commendation Medal.

“I can come here at any time of the day and help anyone who’s in need of food, or who has had a fire, a flood, or domestic violence situation,” said Swanson. “I volunteer because I love our Soldiers and I love their Families.”

Day explained that there are several opportunities around and off post for those who want to volunteer.

“There’s opportunities off post like Fort Carson Operation Good Samaritan,” Day said. “It’s a blanket umbrella for any volunteer service outside of the gates as long as it’s a non-profit, volunteers can still track their hours.”

“Thank you for your selfless service, Fort Carson wouldn’t be the world class Army post without you,” said Dooghan.

To learn more about the Army Volunteer Corps at Fort Carson, click here.

To qualify for a Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, a Servicemember’s service must be voluntary, must produce tangible results, and reflect favorably on the Army and the Department of Defense.

Department of the Army Meritorious Public Service Medal:

-      Ranya Kelly

Department of the Army Public Service Commendation Medal:

-      Donna Swanson

Department of the Army Award Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, U.S. Army Medical Activity Department, Evans Army Community Hospital:

-      Capt. Lucas Musseau

-      Sgt. Ashley Wagner

-      Sgt. Jose Sandoval

-      Sgt. Brittany Koppenhaver

United States Army Forces Command Dr. Mary E. Walker Award:

-      Jessi Mitchell

Honorable Mention, Fort Carson, Steadfast & Loyal Volunteer Hall of Fame Inductees:

-      Martha Reed, 2014

-      David Terrell, Jr., 2016

-      Norris Cole, 2018

-      Ursula Pittman, 2019

-      Clara Huff, 2020

-      Marisol Wentling, 2021

Fort Carson Exemplary Volunteer Service Award:

1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team:

-      Lindsey Buel

-      Adrienne McCormick

-      Spc. Paige Lane

2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team

-      Lisa Hill

U.S. Army Medical Department Activity

- Staff Sgt. Carlie Pack

- Patricia Santos

Soldier Recovery Unit

-      Sgt. Catherine Quin Cruz

-      Sgt. 1st Class Michelle Wissler

10th Special Forces Group (Airborne)

-      Elisa Dorsh

-      Stacey Heisler

American Red Cross EACH

-      Haejin Kim

-      Sam Leathes

DFMWR Army Community Service

-      Jacqueline Buie

DFMWR Soldier & Community Recreation Division

-      Hubert Nicholson

Mountain Post Santa’s Workshop

-      April Christie

-      Bryn Omer

Mountain Post Spouses’ Club

-      Lacey Miller

-      Christy Walker

Religious Support Office

-      Rose Terrell

-      Pat Watzka

Tumbleweeds at Fort Carson

-      Lindsay Parham

Warriors Warehouse

-      Ranya Kelly

Fort Carson Youth Volunteer of the Year Award:

American Red Cross, Evans Army Community Hospital

-      Alexa Moses

-      Inioluwa Iselaiye

Fort Carson Volunteer of the Year Award:

4th Division Sustainment Brigade

-      Chiara Agness

-      Tonya Hollifield

American Red Cross Evans Army Community Hospital

-      Marcia ‘Dianne’ Griffith

Tumbleweeds at the Mountain Post

-      Christine Kiser

Warrior’s Warehouse

-      Donna Swanson