Airport ambassadors honored for volunteerism

The Travelers Aid Society of Metropolitan Detroit and Wayne County Airport Authority have presented 27 airport ambassador volunteers at Detroit Metropolitan Airport wit the President's Volunteer Service Award -- a national honor offered in recognition of volunteer service.

Established in 2003, the award is available on an annual basis to individuals, groups and families that have been or exceeded specific requirements for volunteer service and have demonstrated exemplary citizenship through volunteering. The society and authority are two of the thousands of organizations that have joined forces to deliver the award on behalf of the President to honor the volunteers that strengthen the nation.

"We are extremely proud to recognize our most outstanding volunteers with the President's Volunteer Service Award," said society CEO Jim Kelly. "Travelers Aid airport ambassador volunteers are role models in our community, donating their time, energy and talent to bring us closer as neighbors and a nation. The award is our way of thanking these volunteers and inspiring everyone in our community to make volunteering a central part of their lives."

Travelers Aid has a long history of partnership with Metro Airport to provide volunteer-based assistance to airport customers. Identifiable by their distinctive red vests, the airport ambassadors can be found throughout the airport providing information to assist travelers along their journey to, from or through Metro Detroit.

More than 50 airport ambassador volunteers have performed nearly 7,000 hours of community service so far in 2010 alone. The ambassadors provide a wide variety of services and information, ranging from a point in the right direction to connecting stranded and separated travelers with their companions.

"America's volunteers work to make our communities safer and stronger," said Airport Authority Interim CEO Genelle M. Allen. The Airport Authority, in partnership with Travelers Aid Society of Metro Detroit, is proud to be aligned with this prestigious award. We are especially proud of our volunteers who have generously given their time and talent to assist the more than 30 million passengers who transit DTW (the airport) each year."

The award is officially issued by the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation as a way to thank and honor Americans, who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service. The council is chaired by two-time Super Bowl champion Darrell Green with former U.S. Senators Bob Dole and John Glenn as honorary co-chairs. The council comprises leaders in government, media, entertainment, business, education, nonprofits, volunteer service organization and community volunteering.

To be eligible for the award, a certifying organization must record and verify that an honoree has completed specific service hour requirements varying by age. The certifying organization may then deliver the award to the honoree on behalf of the council.

For more information about becoming an airport ambassador volunteer at Metro Airport, contact Airport Volunteer Supervisor Fran Wood at (313) 414-6456 or visit www.travelersaiddetroit.org.