The Summit Area YMCA held its 127th Annual Meeting Celebration at the Summit Fortnightly Club on June 12, 2013. The Annual Meeting celebrated volunteers who have made significant contributions to the Summit YMCA, the Berkeley Heights YMCA and the Learning Circle YMCA. Over 120 members, donors and community representatives were in attendance. 

“This event provides a wonderful venue to celebrate our dedicated volunteers and to highlight all they have done to advance the cause-driven mission of the Y,” said Darrell Johnson, Summit Area YMCA President and CEO. “The honorees give selflessly of their time, talent and treasure to ensure that our Ys remain vital, vibrant and valued centers that strengthen the community by nurturing youth, promoting overall wellness, and helping our neighbors in need.”

Each branch of the Summit Area YCMA selected two honorees based on unique criteria. The Mission Advancement Volunteer was selected for taking a lead role in advancing the Y mission within the community by promoting Y initiatives among community leaders and for helping to form strategic partnerships and collaborations to meet community needs. The Living Our Cause Volunteer was selected for participating in a leadership capacity by serving as a member of a branch board or committee and for helping to raise funds as an advocate for the Y cause.

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The Berkeley Heights YMCA honored Pater Marchetta as its Mission Advancement Volunteer for his dedication to the Association Facilities Committee and as a Y Board member, and Ann Garrity as its Living Our Cause Volunteer for her commitment to advocating for the Y and raising funds for the Annual Campaign. The Learning Circle YMCA selected Teresa Mendez as its Mission Advancement Volunteer for her avid support of the Annual Campaign and participating on the Branch Advisory Board, and Michael Yesenko as its Living Our Cause Volunteer for enriching the children’s experience by reading to them each week. The Summit Area YMCA chose Kevin Hill as its Mission Advancement Volunteer for championing strategic relationships for the Y within the community and Stephanie Kramer as its Living Our Cause Volunteer for her commitment to the Board and events like the Laugh Out Loud Comedy fundraiser.

In addition to the volunteers, three teens were also honored by the Summit YMCA as participants in the Y Achievers program. This program is free to high school students and offers unique opportunities to explore career and college interests, develop skills, and broaden access to information and resources, so life and education goals can be realized. The young women honored were Jeanne-Marie Hamilton-Moore as Youth of the Year, as well as Helena Jones and Natasha Smith as Graduating Achievers.

The event culminated with the presentation of the Shuart Reed Memorial Award. Cindy Martin, Board Chair for the Summit Area YMCA, presented the award to Kevin Cummings, President and CEO of Investors Bank, for his generous support of the Summit Area YMCA. The award honors those who exemplify a commitment to the betterment of the community. Glenn Mortimer, a representative from Congressman Leonard Lance’s office, also took the opportunity to present Kevin Cummings with a commendation for his substantive and meaningful contributions to the Summit community.

While accepting his award and commendation, Mr. Cummings remarked, “It takes a good heart and a great deal of energy to make an impact, one that cannot be done without a group effort. I urge everyone to make a commitment of time and resources to support the Summit Area YMCA. Together, through a shared passion for doing good, we can make a difference for all our neighbors.”