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Volunteer Fairfax, along with the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, honored 117 volunteers during the 20th anniversary Fairfax County Volunteer Service Awards sponsored by United Healthcare.

The “Continue the Legacy of Service” event took place at the Waterford at Springfield. The award ceremony is one of the largest communitywide recognition events for volunteers.

The following groups and individuals from Fairfax were nominated for an award:

ŸAdult Volunteer 250 Hours and Over Award and the Benchmark 250 Award: Terri Baker, volunteer at the Fairfax County Animal Shelter.

ŸAdult Volunteer 250 and Over Award and the Benchmark 1,000 Award: Gary Sidor, volunteer at the Fairfax Police Youth Club.

ŸAdult Volunteer 250 Hours and Under Award: Sally Merten, volunteer at the Fairfax Library Foundation.

ŸAdult Volunteer Group Award: Mason LIFE Program, volunteers at various locations; and OAR of Fairfax County.

ŸBenchmark 250 Award: Katherine Hill, volunteer at Centreville Regional Library; Amy Josephson, volunteer at the Fairfax County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court; Peter Mory, volunteer at the Lewinsville Adult Health Day Care Center; Jami Ojala, volunteer at the Fairfax County Animal Shelter; and Alcira Pernot, volunteer at the Volunteer Interpreter Program.

ŸBenchmark 500 Award: Todd Leibbrand, volunteer at Best Kids.

ŸCorporate Volunteer Program Award: Excella Consulting for volunteering at Homestretch Inc.; and Balfour Beatty Spirit, volunteer at Shelter House.

ŸCounty Volunteer Award: Rebecca Barthel, volunteer at the Fairfax County Animal Shelter.

ŸFairfax County Volunteer Program Award: The Friends of the Fairfax County Public Library; Fairfax County Animal Shelter Foster Program; and The FCPA- Invasive Management Area.

ŸRising Star Award: John Uthoff, volunteer at FACETS.

ŸYouth Benchmark 100 Award: Allison Belcher, volunteer at the Northern Virginia Therapeutic Riding Program; and Alycia Chau, volunteer at FACETS.

“Every day in Fairfax County, volunteers donate their time and talents to touch lives and to build stronger communities,” said Jeanne Sanders, executive director of Volunteer Fairfax. “We honor those volunteers for not only the work they have done, but for the inspiration they have provided to so many.”

More than 500 guests were expected to attend the celebration, including the Supervisors, key members of local and state government and emcee ABC7/WJLA-TV Anchor Cynné Simpson.

Hub Theatre, playwright win for new work

At the 28th annual Helen Hayes Awards on Monday evening, Marc Acito was presented with the 2012 Charles MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play for his "Birds of a Feather." Fairfax's Hub Theatre staged “Birds of a Feather” in a world premiere production last summer.

The play tells the story of two Central Park Zoo penguins, Roy and Silo, who raised a chick together. The children's book, "And Tango Make Three," by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, inspired the play.

Helen Pafumi, Hub’s artistic director, called the play “at its heart, a story about the many faces of love."

In accepting the award at the Warner Theatre, playwright Acito said he was "extremely honored."

Hub Theatre is a professional, nonprofit theater company performing at the John Swayze Theatre at the New School of Northern Virginia in Fairfax. The Helen Hayes Awards are presented for excellence in professional theater in the Washington, D.C., area.

Community Champions Awards honor four

Molina Healthcare recognized four individuals at an April 17 dinner as this year’s Community Champions Award winners for making a positive impact in the communities they serve.

ŸMarie Markey of Alexandria volunteers for Annandale Christian Community for Action. She is coordinator and chair of the Family Emergency Assistance program, which has given more than 2,500 people in nearly 900 households support to pay for rent, utility bills and medical and dental care. She also provides free physical therapy at the Arlington Free Clinic.

ŸEd Shahin of McLean advocates for the senior population in his community through his volunteer work at Lewinsville Senior Center and as an elected member of the McLean Community Center Governing Board for the past decade. He helped develop computer and exercise classes at the Senior Center and currently serves on the Aging in McLean Task Force, sponsored by Dranesville Supervisor John Foust.

ŸMattie Palmore and Kari Warren are co-founders of the Women’s Group of Mt. Vernon, a support group for victims of domestic violence. Both women, survivors of domestic violence, have used their personal experiences to help support women in need. Since 2004, more than 250 women have participated in the group and about 140 women attend the organization’s annual Women’s Day conference.

“It is an honor to celebrate Marie, Ed, Mattie and Kari — individuals who have made such a positive impact in their communities through their selfless work,” said Jean Glossa, medical director of the Fairfax County clinics for Molina Healthcare. “It is our pleasure to not only recognize these four winners, but also to be able to support their worthy causes.”

Each honoree received a $1,000 grant to donate to a nonprofit organization of his or her choice. Markey gave her grant to Annandale Christian Community for Action. Shahin gave his to the McLean Rotary Club Foundation. Palmore and Warren donated their grant to the Women’s Group of Mt. Vernon.

Fairfax woman is 15 millionth Nationals fan

The Washington Nationals welcomed Sarah McCarty of Fairfax as the 15 millionth fan in franchise history before the team hosted the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park on April 21.

McCarty was given a Jayson Werth autographed jersey during an in-game presentation shown on the NatsHD scoreboard. McCarty also will receive four Lexus Presidents Club tickets along with parking passes and field passes to watch batting practice at an upcoming Nationals home game.

“We appreciate every fan who comes through our gates at Nationals Park, and look forward to reaching many more milestones as our fan base continues to grow,” said Andrew Feffer, Nationals chief operating officer.