American Red Cross Honors Volunteers and Supporters at Celebration of Support Event


The American Red Cross Northeast Wisconsin Chapter celebrated its volunteers June 25, 2013 with its Annual Celebration of Support event held at the Riverside Ballroom in Green Bay. Special thank you to our major sponsor, The Grainger Foundation and supporting sponsor of Ameriprise Auto & Home Insurance. Two hundred and seventy 

Kathryn Bracho, anchor Action 2 News This Morning, kicking things off.

Kathryn Bracho, anchor Action 2 News This Morning, kicking things off.

volunteers attended the event. WBAY-TV anchor Action 2 News This Morning, Kathryn Bracho served as the Mistress of Ceremonies for the evening.

The night began with welcoming words from incoming 2013/2014 Board Chair, Mike Gallagher of Schreiber Foods. Following Gallagher was Greg Novinska, CEO, Badger-Hawkeye Blood Services Region with an update on blood services.

One-a-Week Club Awards were presented to businesses and clubs who committed to at least 52 donations of blood per year, or one per week during the previous year, followed by dinner.

After dinner the Volunteer Recognition Awards were presented to individuals and groups for their exceptional volunteer work.

Germaine Reed, of Denmark, Ed McHugh Worker of the Year award for front-line volunteers with exceptional reliability to the blood program.

Green Bay Packers, Business, Group or Organization of the Year, given to a business or group of volunteers for years of commitment to the American Red Cross Blood Services program.

Woodside Senior Communities, Hilary Lesperance Award for outstanding support in the Blood Services Program.

Philip Everhart, of Marinette and Scott Vanidestine of Green Bay, Kerrie Forester Emergency Services Award for commitment and dedication to Disaster Services and members of the Disaster Response Team.

(l-r) Scott Vanidestine, Emergency Services Award, Judy Gregory, Disaster Director, Deb Harrington, Behind-the-Scenes Award, and Nancy Mirhashemi, Volunteer of the Year.

(l-r) Scott Vanidestine, Emergency Services Award, Judy Gregory, Disaster Director, Deb Harrington, Behind-the-Scenes Award, and Nancy Mirhashemi, Volunteer of the Year.

Paul Strom, of Green Bay, Andrew Janssen Transportation Award, for outstanding work in transportation services for the American Red Cross and providing transportation for the elderly population and those with disabilities to help them sustain an independent lifestyle.

Shopko, Corporate Benefactor Award, for a business with outstanding commitment and dedication to the American Red Cross.

Todd Bierowski, of Depere, Mrs. Crane (Mary) Murphy Award, presented to a member of the Board of Directors for exceptional contribution and advancement of the American Red Cross.

Debra Harrington, of Green Bay & Leon Wollersheim, of New Holstein,  Behind-the-Scenes Award presented to a volunteer who assists with essential office work at one of our office locations in development, facilities, reception and other behind-the-scenes jobs.

Jennifer Pederson, of Green Bay, Rookies of the Year, presented to a volunteer for exceptional level of service and has started within the past year.

Nancy Mirhashemi, of Green Bay, Volunteer of the Year Award, presented to the individual who has demonstrated long-term commitment to multiple programs of the American Red Cross.

Kate Burgess, of Depere, and CEO of fulfillnet, Clara Barton Award, the highest award of the night, presented to an individual who exemplifies the qualities of American Red Cross pioneer Clara Barton.

(l-r) Shawn Kiser, Special Events, Kate Burgess, Jody Weyers, Volunteer Director, Mike Gallagher, Board Chair.

(l-r) Shawn Kiser, Special Events, Kate Burgess, Jody Weyers, Volunteer Director, Mike Gallagher, Board Chair.

Congratulations to all the award recipients and thank you to everyone for your time, blood and support of the American Red Cross.

Click HERE to see pictures of all the award recipients.

Celebrate Summer with the American Red Cross

At least 425 blood donations needed at 27th Annual Super Donor Days scheduled just before Independence Day


Summer is a time for the days that never end. It’s time for diving in and grilling out. It’s time to share life and create memories and stories. These are the stories we live for, and this summer, they’re in season.

Create your own memories and help others create theirs by joining the American Red Cross at the 27th Annual Super Donor Days on July 2-3 at Shopko Hall, sponsored by WFRV-TV and WIXX-FM. All presenting donors can enjoy Glass Nickel pizza in the refreshment area, live entertainment courtesy of PMI Entertainment Group and a free Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last. Donors will also be automatically entered to win a $3,000 American Express gift card! Free childcare and parking are also available. Check out photos from last year’s event here!

27th Annual Super Donor Days blood drive

Tuesday, July 2 from 12 to 7 p.m. and Wednesday, July 3 from 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Shopko Hall, 1901 Oneida St., Green Bay, Wis.

“Super Donor Days is not your typical blood drive. It’s a party with a purpose and we hope community  members join us for a Green Bay-area tradition by lending an arm and donating blood this summer,” said Greg Novinska, CEO of the Red Cross Badger-Hawkeye Blood Services Region. “We invite local residents to come spend an hour with us just before Independence Day to help ensure a sufficient blood supply for patients in Wisconsin and across the country.”

Each day the Red Cross needs 17,000 blood donations to meet the needs of patients across the country, and with schools out and families on vacations, it can be difficult to meet these needs during the summer months. The Badger-Hawkeye & N.E.W. Region strives to collect at least 425 pints at Shopko Hall July 2-3.

During the summer months of June, July and August, on average, about two fewer donors give blood at each Red Cross blood drive than what hospital patients need. If at least two more donors gave blood at every Red Cross blood drive this summer – above what’s expected – we would be better assured of having enough lifesaving blood products available for patients in need.
How to donate blood

Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

About the American Red Cross

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or visit us on Twitter at @NEWRedCross

Super Donor Days Volunteers needed!!

super donor days

Volunteers are needed for either Tuesday, July 2 or on Wednesday, July 3 for the two day Super Donor Days Blood Drive at Shopko Hall in Green Bay.

Tuesday, July 2   

  • 3:45pm – last donor passes through your area

Needed:  4 Donor room Aides

Wednesday, July 3 

  • 6:30am – 10:00am

Needed:  5 donor room aide and 2 refreshment

  • 9:45am – 1:30pm or last donor passes through your area

Needed:  9 donor room aides and 3 refreshment

Donor Room Aide – Work in the blood donation area wiping down the beds after each use, carry bins with blood bags to the MUA’s for processing, and escort donors to the canteen area

Canteen – Serve drinks and food to donors after their donation, monitor donors for post donation reactions

To sign up email Mary at or call 920-227-4240. Provide your first and last name, phone number, day, and shift time you would prefer to work.                                              

CHAPTER “C”BRAT FRY to Support the Red Cross



American Red Cross  and  Chapter C

Friday, June 28  and Saturday, June 29

10:00 AM – 5:00 P.M.

Pick-n-Save, 55 West Pioneer Road,  Fond du Lac

It is an honor for Goldwing Road Riders Association – Chapter “C” to host this event.

This year’s event will be for Chapter C and the American Red Cross. 

Please consider stopping by to visit and to see the Goldwing motorcycles on display.  Also check out Chapter “C”s website at to learn more about this event.

Reflection: Conference on Volunteering and Service – Day One

By: Jody Weyers, Volunteer and Communications Director

More than 5,000 volunteer leaders gathered at our Nation’s Capitol June 19-22 for the largest gathering of its kind – The Points of Light’s Annual Conference on Volunteering and Service. Service DAy 1

When you go to a conference of this size people always ask, “What did you learn?” I find it is not so much about what I learned, but it is more about being inspired, rejuvenated and hopeful for change to come.


Talk about inspiration – My first session that I attended was called; Mobilizing Youth for Change presented by the Youth Advisory Council of GenerationOn. This group of 14 teenagers from across the US blew me away with their poise, confidence and forward thinking. These kids, and yes, I mean kids, are changing the world. Take a moment to read their bios and be inspired too.


Next up was the opening plenary, titled “The Spirit of Service.” The plenary is to get you jazzed up and excited for what is to come over the next few days. I love finding out who the guest speakers will be because they are always people of influence, power and great statue. Once again, this year did not disappoint. We opened with the Mayor of the District of Columbia, The Honorable Vincent C. Gray, and closed with one of my favorite motivational speakers (who I had the chance of meeting and talking with when he was in Green Bay for the Green Bay Chamber Annual Meeting last fall) J.R. Martinez, U.S. Army Veteran, Author and Actor.

Vincent Gray jr martinez

My first day closed with a networking event just for Red Cross volunteer managers from across the US. There were about 50 other volunteer managers there as well as Jim Star, VP, Volunteer Management and Kim Gube, Volunteer Relationships Manager for National Headquarters.

Getting that time to “talk shop” with my fellow Red Cross volunteer managers and bend the ear of the people at the top is invaluable. The volunteer management department has been turned on its head this past year with the launch of Volunteer Connection. Don’t get me wrong, I think it is a great tool, and one incredible step for the American Red Cross in being OneRedCross, but with change comes lots of questions.  Volunteer Connection was definitely the big topic of discussion over our beverages and appetizers.

Looking back now, on that first day, it was perfect! A day filled with inspiration from all angles: youth empowerment, empowerment from the top and empowerment from within my own organization and peers.

Stay tuned for day two…… Jody

ps. To view additional day one pictures from the conference click HERE.

June 19, 2013 – Part 1: National Conference of Volunteering and Service

By Jody Weyers, Director of Volunteers, Northeast Wisconsin Chapter

It is 7:21 and I am sitting on the plane from Milwaukee heading to Baltimore for the National Conference on Volunteering & Service. This will be my third year attending this conference. I have been to New York City, Chicago and now Washington D.C.

This conference is made up of the “who’s who” in the volunteer management field and I am excited to be among such amazing people.

When I signed up for the conference, there was literally hundreds of sessions to chose from. As I was choosing my sessions I tried to think “what are my goals and objectives?”

Going into this year, I focused my sessions on three areas:

1. Social Engagement – a field that is ever changing. I look forward to learning some best practices to utilize in communicating with our volunteers, engaging our community and sharing our story.

2. Youth Development – Youth engagement is a focus of the National Red Cross and an area, that we can do a better job at. We want to engage our youth so that they become life long members of the American Red Cross through their volunteer work, as a blood donor and/or financial donor.

3. Personal Development – I am a life long learner and I feel there are always areas that I can continue to work on to better myself.

I will have some down time in between sessions so I hope to get a chance to visit some of the new monuments in D.C., get a tour of the National Red Cross Building and just enjoy being in a new city for a few days!

Look for my reflection tonight after my first day of sessions!!

Signing off……. Jody


Get to know our Board Members: Pat Exarhos

By Erin Thayse, American Red Cross Volunteer 


Pat Exarhos_2093As a thirty-two year resident of Appleton, Pat Exarhos understands the importance of being active within her community. She started as a manager at Kimberly-Clark Corp in their Research and Development department in 1989 and grew into director and interim VP roles. While at Kimberly-Clark, she was instrumental in co-founding the Kimberly-Clark women’s network. Pat decided to be even more involved in the business community as a co-owner of Breadsmith stores in both Appleton and Green Bay. While her careers in the corporate world and as a business owner ended in 2011 and 2005 respectively, her activism in the community has been going strong. Pat has been a member of the Greater Fox Cities Habitat for Humanity since 2003, currently chairing the Leadership Development committee. She has maintained strong relationships with assisting women’s organizations by being part of the Women’s Fund, Mid-Day Women’s Alliance and Women’s Joint Organizations Event Committee since 2012. Pat brings a wealth of experience to the Northeast Wisconsin American Red Cross through all her past and current endeavors.

American Red Cross

Board Member Since:  April, 2013

Responsibilities/Duties as a Board Member: I joined the Major Gifts and Programs & Facilities committees.  Since I am a new board and committee member, I am in learning mode regarding the responsibilities and duties but I am excited to help in any way I can!

You are a very active volunteer. How did you get started in volunteering? I have been volunteering since I moved to the Appleton area. I wanted to learn more about and give back to the community. Initially, I was involved in blood pressure screening and car seat training programs. When my children were young, my volunteerism was aligned with their school and extra-curricular needs and interests.  In recent years, I have found my own areas of passion that matched with my skills – and volunteered where needed.

What motivates you as a volunteer and board member? The mission of the Red Cross; it is hard to argue with the very critical needs it represents. Red Cross has an excellent reputation so I am honored to be part of this volunteer organization.

 How did you become involved with the Red Cross? I was attending the local Red Cross fundraiser, Dancing with Our Stars event as my husband’s boss was a local celebrity dancer. I met a former colleague, Pete Dulcamara, and he recruited me to apply for a Board position. 

What do you hope to accomplish by being a board member? I hope to help this Red Cross chapter accomplish its goals, especially on the committees I am serving. As I think about people I know, I would like to get the word out about the Red Cross and recruit more volunteers. There are more people like me who want to give back. Beyond that, I am learning more about the organization – for example, I am in the process of taking disaster relief classes as I would like to serve in this area. So this is a growth opportunity for me as an individual.   

Where do you feel the Red Cross can grow while a board member? I am still learning; as a person new to the organization, I think the visibility of the local Red Cross chapter could increase resulting in more dollars and volunteers from the local area.


Volunteers Needed: July 4th Festival Foods Fire Over the Fox

FOTF Logo_Festival Foods_rgbThe American Red Cross has been a partner of this downtown event for six years. We provide 90 volunteers to staff two foods tents on the east and west side of the Main St. Bridge at the 4th of July celebration.

We are looking for volunteers for:  

Tent # 1: East Side of Main St. Bridge
(near Coaches Corner)

  • 7pm-11pm (10 – needed)

Tent #2: West Side of Main St. Bridge
(near museum)

  • 7pm-11pm (5 – needed)

Assignments include cooking and serving brats, burgers, and beverages to the downtown crowds. Must be 18 years of age or older due to selling of alcohol in the tent.

The American Red Cross receive a donation of $5,000 for our support of this great downtown community event!

If you can help please contact Jody Weyers, at 920-227-4287 or

Volunteer Flyer- Festival Foods Fire over the Fox 2013 - needs update

Friday Funny: GEICO Dracula Commercial

Today is World Blood Donor Day, a day to thank our volunteers and donors for their generous donations of blood and blood products. Blood will always be a need and a gift of life. Get your Nexcare special bandages when you donate blood at your local Red Cross center.

We hope your weekend is as Happy as Dracula volunteering at a blood drive!

American Red Cross Survey Finds People Unclear about How to Stay Safe in the Water

Most families plan to swim in areas without lifeguards this summer, but
lack basic water safety knowledge

(June 13, 2013) — Even though nearly two-thirds of families with small children plan on swimming in areas without lifeguards this summer, many people don’t know the right thing to do in water emergencies or how to keep their loved ones safe in the water, according to a new American Red Cross poll.

“People tend to spend more time in and around the water during the summer, so now is a great to review water safety precautions so you know what to do to stay safe,” said Patty Flowers, Regional Chapter Executive.

The Red Cross poll found 63 percent of families with children plan on swimming in an area without a lifeguard this summer. However, nearly half of those polled had never taken swimming lessons, with African-Americans (32 percent) less likely to have received formal training.

Nearly half of Americans say they have had an experience where they were afraid they would drown, according to the findings. Hispanics reported a higher percentage (66%) of having such an experience over Whites (46%). Overall, four in 10 (41%) say they know someone who was in danger of drowning, which is an increase of 16 percentage points from a similar 2009 Red Cross survey.

Two thirds (67%) of those asked mistakenly believe that putting inflatable arm bands, or “water wings,” on children is enough to keep them safe when an adult is not nearby. These are not lifesaving devices, and children and weak/inexperienced swimmers should wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets while remaining under constant adult supervision.

The survey findings show that people mistakenly believe some steps such as having a swimming buddy or flotation device will keep them safe. For example, while the Red Cross recommends that people always swim with a buddy in designated swimming areas supervised by lifeguards, buddies alone are not enough to keep swimmers safe.

Another concerning finding in the 2013 Red Cross survey was that most of those polled were unsure of the right steps to take when someone appears to be in distress in the water: More than nine in 10 (93%) people were unable to identify the correct order of actions to take to help a swimmer who may be in danger of drowning.

“The correct steps to take when you see a swimmer who needs help is to shout for help, reach or throw the person a rescue or flotation device and tell them to grab it; then call 9-1-1 if needed,” Flowers said. “People think that if a person isn’t calling out for help that they must be ok. However, they are likely using all their energy to just try to stay above water.”

“People think they should enter the water to save someone, but often this endangers the life of the rescuer,” she added.

 Other signs of a swimmer in trouble include:

  • Treading water and waving an arm
  • Doggie paddling with no forward progress
  • Hanging onto a safety line
  • Floating on their back and waving their arms
  • Arms extended side or front, pressing down for support, but making no forward progress
  • Positioned vertically in the water, but not kicking legs
  • Underwater for more than 30 seconds
  • Floating at surface, face-down, for more than 30 seconds

Red Cross swimming lessons help people develop skills and water safety behaviors that help people be more comfortable and safe when they are in, on and around the water. The Red Cross encourages all household members to enroll in age-appropriate water orientation and Learn-to-Swim programs. To find classes for your family, contact your local aquatic facility and ask for American Red Cross swimming programs.

An infographic highlighting survey results has been developed. People can find additional water safety information at


Survey details: Telephone survey of 1,011 U.S. Adults 18 years and older on April 11-14, 2013 conducted in ORC International’s CARAVAN® survey using a landline-cell dual-frame sampling design.  Margin of error is +/- 3.1 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. For comparison, this report includes findings from a 2009 Water Safety Poll–Telephone survey of  1,002 U.S. Adults 18 years and older on March 20-23, 2009 conducted by ORC International’s CARAVAN®. Margin of error is +/- 3.1 percent at the 95% confidence level.


About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at