Polk County Public Schools honored our 2019 School Volunteers of the Year this morning during a ceremony at Bartow Civic Center.
The annual event highlights the crucial role volunteers play in students’ lives, and how they enrich our schools with their dedication. Winners were selected from more than 90 individuals who were named Volunteer of the Year at their respective schools.
The School Volunteer of the Year Awards Program is sponsored by MIDFLORIDA Credit Union. Gift sponsors include Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa, LEGOLAND Florida Resort, Salem’s Fresh Eats and Starbucks.
Awards were presented at the elementary and secondary level for youth, adult and senior volunteers. Without further ado, the winners are:
Abigail Lightsey, Frostproof Elementary, Youth Volunteer of the Year
Homeschool student Abigail Lightsey has been a school volunteer for one year. Within that short time she has made a tremendous impact, already serving more than 200 volunteer hours. Her dream is to become a teacher, and volunteering at Frostproof Elementary has given her valuable experience. She assists with classroom reading activities, as well as the school’s Accelerated Reader program.
Crystal Maycumber, Walter Caldwell Elementary, Adult Volunteer of the Year
Crystal Maycumber has been a school volunteer for 12 years. She plays a key role in the operations of Caldwell’s parent-teacher association. She helps with special events, serves food at parent nights, decorates doors to promote school spirit, and lends a helping hand wherever needed. She volunteers in the classroom, and helps students build upon their math and reading skills. She always encourages students to do their best.
Elizabeth Bolden, Garden Grove Elementary, Senior Volunteer of the Year
Elizabeth Bolden has been a school volunteer for one year and spends about 40 hours a week at Garden Grove Elementary. She works in the media center and helps students find interesting books to inspire them to read. She experienced a severe automobile accident in December that left her with several broken bones. She didn’t let this stop her devotion to the students, returning a month later to be around the children she missed so much.
Angiana Pierre, East Area Adult School, Youth Volunteer of the Year
Angiana Pierre has been a school volunteer for one year. She walks from Auburndale High to volunteer at East Area Adult School. Because she speaks Creole, she is able to help the office staff with translation. She developed and organized a library in the Literacy Council office for adults who read below third-grade level. She also worked with the guidance secretary and staff to create intake packets in three languages for incoming students.
Reba Coil, Bartow Senior High, Adult Volunteer of the Year
Reba Coil has been a school volunteer for 18 years. She solicited the community’s support for a professional clothing drive to provide more than 200 outfits for students in need, and is an advisory board member for BHS’ construction and engineering academy. She also serves as a mentor for the Take Stock in Children program. She is an active member of the school advisory council and serves as president of the parent-teacher-student association.
Tommy Helms, Lake Gibson Senior High, Senior Volunteer of the Year
Tommy Helms has been a school volunteer for 41 years. He has assisted with many of the school’s events, including homecoming and prom. He also chaperones students for special events. But his most important contribution is being a handyman at school. This past year, he refurbished the large wooden sign that marks the entrance at LGHS.