CAMPBELL COUNTY, TN. (WLAF)- Two Campbell County residents have been recognized for their efforts in the community. Each year, volunteers throughout the state honored by the State of Tennessee. This initiative, led by Volunteer Tennessee, seeks to recognize outstanding community servants from each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. With the program now in its 16th year statewide and its third year in Campbell County, two local leaders have been selected as the youth and adult Volunteer of the Year. Bella Fleming has been named as the Youth Volunteer of the Year, and Patricia Siwinski has been named as the Adult Volunteer of the Year. These two servant leaders will be recognized by Gov. Bill Lee at a special ceremony in Nashville this spring.
Fleming is a senior at Campbell County High School with a heart for giving back – especially to children. She is a student athlete and dual enrollment student at Roane State Community College. She is a member of the Beta Club, volunteers at fundraisers for Community Health of East Tennessee, and coaches a youth cheer and dance team. As the daughter of an educator, Fleming has seen first-hand how the changing demands in education have made it difficult for some students to keep up with their peers. In an effort to give back, Fleming has started free private tutoring. Prior youth recipients of the award include Mary Grace Myers and Landyn Ford.
Patricia Siwinski has served as the Director of the Campbell County Animal Center for the past eight years. In this capacity, Siwinski has turned down the salary for the position so that the funds typically paid to a director can instead go to help the center operate. Under her leadership, the center now offers a small animal clinic that performs public spay and neuter services through no cost to tax payers. Siwinski has made the center a place where animals can finally receive the medical care that they need, and enrichment programs help animals stay happy until they can find their forever home. One of Siwinski’s newest projects is the Critter Cupboard – a community pet food bank. The Critter Cupboard helps fill the gap for pet owners in tough economic times so that they don’t have to surrender their pet to the animal center when finances get tough. Most importantly, though, Siwinksi is directly responsible for taking the animal center from a three percent save rate to an 82 percent save rate. Because of her, animals in Campbell County finally have a chance to survive and find a new home. Prior adult recipients of the award include Brandon Johnson and Bill Thompson.
“Tennessee is known as the Volunteer State, and I believe that Campbell County exemplifies that better than anywhere else,” said Brandon Johnson, who serves as Chairman of the Governor’s Volunteer Stars Award Program. “Our committee considered several nominees, but ultimately it was the selfless service of these two that rose to the top. Their dedication to our community should certainly be celebrated.”
(WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED 12/19/2023- 6AM)