Ms. Suella York has been awarded the Emma Marie Baird Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service in Army Community Service (ACS). Fort Sam Houston ACS nominated Ms. York for her service while residing in San Antonio, Texas. After leaving Fort Sam Houston, Ms. York volunteered for ACS at the Headquarters in Alexandria, VA where she assists both the Volunteer and AFAP Program Managers and at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) in Washington, DC where she serves as the Army Family Team Building (AFTB) Program Manager and the Installation Volunteer Coordinator. She was recognized at a ceremony at Fort Sam Houston. Only thirty-nine ACS volunteers Army-wide have previously received this prestigious Department of the Army award.
Since 1993 Ms. York provided over 3,800 hours of service to ACS at Fort Sam Houston where she served as the ACS Volunteer Supervisor for two years and was instrumental in reorganizing the volunteer corps. Ms. York established recruitment, training, retention, and recognition programs for ACS volunteers. She provided volunteer support to all ACS programs and assisted with special events and projects.
Ms. York was instrumental in setting up and manning numerous Family Assistance Centers during emergency situations. In support of the 82nd Airborne Division tragedy on Green Ramp, she was solely responsible for planning, coordinating, and managing 24-hour work assignments for 150 volunteers. She also assisted with management of volunteers who supported mobilizations/deployments during Desert Shield/Storm and then assisted staff with preparations for homecoming and reunions of these soldiers.
As a part of Army Family Team Building, Ms. York served as a Special Projects Volunteer, Instructor Trainer, and Master Trainer. She was instrumental in developing the program by assisting in establishing the AFTB Advisory Council and forming partnerships with the Medical Center, the National Guard, and Army reserve units.
Ms. York volunteered for the Army Family Action Plan, serving as a facilitator and assisting with preparations for the events.
While assisting the Installation Volunteer Coordinator, Ms. York designed and implemented an automated record keeping system to collect numbers of volunteers and hours for the installation on a quarterly basis. She also assisted with the planning and execution of the Installation Volunteer Recognition Luncheon.
As a volunteer leader, Ms. York believes in setting the example, delegating, and letting people perform their volunteer jobs. Her volunteer contributions had a direct and positive impact on the quality of life of soldiers, retirees, and their family members in the Fort Sam Houston and surrounding communities. Mrs. York's current voluntary service at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and U.S. Army Community and Family Support Center continues to significantly support soldier and family readiness. She volunteers in other organizations on the installation and in the civilian community where she has received the Yellow Rose of Texas Award, the FORSCOM Commander's Award for Public Service, the Fort Sam Houston Commander's Award for Public Service, the United Way of San Antonio Individual Volunteer of the Year Award, and various ACS recognitions.
Ms. York received a gold lapel pin and a citation signed by the Chief of Staff, Army, recognizing her achievements.