Leonard Shimko, Richard Shields, Cross Valley Federal Credit Union

2007 Volunteer Excellence Award Recipient 

For four years, the Cross Valley Federal Credit Union has served as the Presenting Sponsor of the Wilkes-Barre Asthma Walk at Kirby Park in Kingston, Pennsylvania. Credit Union CEO, Len Shimko, and Chairman of the Board Richard Shields have been personally involved in promoting the Asthma Walk and the American Lung Association. The Credit Union's support doesn't stop with their financial contribution, but extends all year long at their five branch offices, on their website, and throughout the community. They actively promote the American Lung Association's mission by providing information at their branches, adding the American Lung Association as a link on their website, and highlighting our mission in the community. Cumulatively, they have helped raise over $160,000 for the Asthma Walk!

The Credit Union hosts monthly events to raise funds and awareness for the American Lung Association. In the six months leading up to the 2006 Asthma Walk, the Credit Union sponsored over a dozen fundraising events, including: Wreath Sales and Bake Sales in all five branches in December; a Soup Sale in January; a Valentine's Day Rose Sale and Sweetheart Basket Raffle, a Hoagie Sale, and a Valentine's Day Fun Pack Sale in February; a Pizza Sale, Bake Sale, Nut and Poppy Seed Sale, and a "St. Patrick's Day Dress Down" in March; a Gertrude Hawk Chocolate Sale, a Dress Down Day, and a Tricky Tray and Comedy Club Event in April; a Mothers Day Raffle & Rose Sale and Barbecue Cook-Outs in May; and, Whistle Pledge Sales and a Sports Memorabilia Raffle in June. They also created floats supporting the American Lung Association and the Asthma Walk for the annual St. Patrick's Day parade. They are an enthusiastic team of supporters who are always coming up with new ideas to support our mission. We couldn't ask for a better supporter! Thanks in large part to the efforts of the Cross Valley Federal Credit Union, the Wilkes-Barre Asthma Walk raised the second highest amount for the entire Mid-Atlantic region this year.

As a Credit Union, the Cross Valley has reach far into the community, with connections to both individuals and businesses. They highlight the American Lung Association in their newsletters, which are mailed to their members, and they encourage the community to learn more about lung health and the American Lung Association mission. The Credit Union is constantly encouraging individuals and businesses to get involved with the American Lung Association. Representatives from the Credit Union accompany American Lung Association staff to meetings with businesses where we request their support and participation. They promote supporters on their website, in monthly newsletters, and in displays at their five branch locations. They also invite each Credit Union member to join our annual Asthma walk. Richard Shields serves as the Corporate Spokesperson for the Wilkes-Barre Asthma Walk. Each year, the Credit Union has secured a base of corporate Asthma Walk supporters. In 2006, there were 70 sponsors for the event, which raises funds for asthma programs and research. These essential funds help the Lung Association reach out into the local community with our programs, offer asthma camp, provide life-saving smoking cessation programs, and countless other activities.

They are also instrumental in Asthma Walk day preparations and volunteers from the Credit Union participate in every aspect of Walk Day - producing and installing walk signs, registering walkers, counting donations, providing refreshments, and even providing clowns and face painters! With 100% participation from all five branches, plus credit union board members, this is one caring sponsor and friend of the American Lung Association.

The Credit Union's fundraising events and the fact that they provide American Lung Association support materials at all five credit union branches are huge in terms of getting the word out about the Lung Association. This wonderful group steadily grows and continues to come up with new and creative ways to promote our mission.