New York Methodist Hospital Celebrates its Volunteers | 2013

May 29, 2013


Left to right, New York Methodist Hospital's award winning volunteers Akiva Pollak, Madonna Reed, Michelle Urman, Alexa Marshall and Sue O'Neil.

On May 23, New York Methodist Hospital's (NYM) board of trustees, Hospital administration, staff and friends gathered with hundreds of NYM volunteers for the Annual Volunteer Recognition Ceremony. The ceremony celebrated the contributions of almost 1,200 NYM volunteers, who collectively gave over 90,000 hours of their time to the Hospital in 2012.

"From gently holding and comforting babies in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), to preparing stretchers in NYM's emergency room, you play a vital role at New York Methodist Hospital," said Mark J. Mundy, president and CEO of the Hospital, addressing the event's attendees. "In the years to come, our volunteers will continue to be crucial to success at NYM, breaking new ground and bringing your incredible spirit to our patients and staff."

The theme of the evening emphasized the history of volunteerism at New York Methodist Hospital, beginning with a group of community members who trained to be volunteer nurses' aides during World War II. Since the formal establishment of NYM's volunteer program, volunteer participation at the Hospital has increased by over 400 percent.

As part of the evening's festivities, Mr. Mundy presented awards to several outstanding volunteers who have unique achievements both in and out of the Hospital.

The Community Spirit Award went to Park Slope, Brooklyn's Madonna Reed, a dedicated volunteer in the Hospital's NICU and health literacy volunteer in the Outpatient Infusion Center. Ms. Reed has lived in Park Slope for 20 years, and in addition to 300 hours of service to NYM, she has also volunteered at the Botanic Garden, St. Francis Xavier Church, P.S. 321 and Poly Prep Country Day School.

The Partners in Nursing Award was presented to Michelle Urman, graduate of Stuyvesant High School and resident of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. Bright and energetic, Ms. Urman joined the Outpatient Pediatric Clinic in 2010, and as a recent college graduate, now heads to medical school in the hopes of becoming a pediatrician herself.

Sue O'Neil, who resides in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn received the Extraordinary Commitment Award. After a career serving as a registered nurse (including a stint as a combat nurse in Vietnam), Ms. O'Neil retired with her husband to Brooklyn in 2008. As a Reach Out and Read Volunteer in the Outpatient Pediatric Clinic, she has served New York Methodist Hospital for almost five years, and has trained countless new volunteers in that time.

The Emergency Department Award for Excellence was given to Akiva Pollak, a resident of Marine Park, Brooklyn. In less than two years, Mr. Pollak's passion for emergency medicine has shone through during his 400 hours of service to NYM. He is a student in the Macaulay Honors Program at Brooklyn College, and also volunteers as a New York Certified EMT.

The New York Methodist Hospital Auxiliary Award for Outstanding Service by a High School Student went to Alexa Marshall, who lives in Canarsie, Brooklyn. Ms. Marshall is a senior in the prestigious Gateway to Medicine Program at Brooklyn Technical High School, and since the summer of 2010, she has volunteered in several areas of the Hospital, including pediatrics, the Women's Diagnostic Center, and the patient library.

New York Methodist Hospital encourages all interested individuals to apply for volunteer opportunities at the Hospital.

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