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3rd Quarter Outstanding Citizen Award Winners

Posted: October 14 2014

Bentonville, AR – October 14, 2014…Mayor McCaslin is pleased to announce the 3rd quarter winners of the Outstanding Citizen Award.  The 3rd quarter winners are: Lauren Nicole Snider, Denise McCroddan and First Baptist Church Studio 412 Student Ministry.  Chick-fil-A of Bentonville, under the operation of Mark Hufford and team, will sponsor the breakfast to honor the citizens and organization selected for this award. 

In 2013, Lauren Nicole Snider moved to Bentonville from Texas.  Ms. Jennifer, Kelley, a counselor at Fulbright Junior High, nominated Ms. Snider in December 2013.  Ms. Kelley wrote, “Lauren is new to Bentonville.  She asked to be a student aide and I placed her in the Counselor’s Office.  Lauren has not only made lots of friends, she has also become very active in our school. Lauren volunteers to show the new students our campus, introduces new students to existing students and even makes arrangements to sit with the new students at lunch. She has gone above and beyond in her efforts to make new students feel welcome. She truly exhibits the spirit of Bentonville with her welcoming smile and personality.”   Ms. Snider is currently a student at Bentonville High School where she has a challenging course load, i.e., three Pre-AP courses and Spanish II.  She is actively involved in the youth group at her church and, along with her sister, is planning a local Young Life chapter. 

Mses. Nanette Grillot, Kelly Pope and Kelly Chase nominated Denise McCroddan.  Mrs. McCroddan has been volunteering at Central Park Elementary for nine years.  She started her volunteer services in the classrooms, doing anything she could to support the homeroom teachers.  She also started volunteering in the library; performing many needed tasks such as shelving books, processing new books, volunteering at book fairs, helping students find books and anything else she was asked to do.  Two years after Central Park Elementary opened, Mrs. McCroddan began helping Special Education students grow in reading, writing and math skills.   In recent years, she has started managing a specific program using the Sound Out reading and comprehension program by Matt Sims, published by High Noon Books.  Mses. Grillot, Pope and Chase wrote, “Mrs. McCroddan comes in everyday possible, usually four days a week, is punctual and very dependable.  She is conscientious, a great role model and very pleasant to both faculty and students alike.  We are very thankful to have this wonderful woman involved in our school for so many years.” 

First Baptist Church of Bentonville’s Studio 412 Student Ministry was nominated for an award by Cindy Acree, Director of Havenwood and Ms. Kailey Wever.  This group of young people gathered this summer to reground Havenwood’s playground and also cleaned/reorganized the donation closet.  Havenwood, a nonprofit organization providing affordable housing and intensive self-sufficiency programming for single parent families, has a playground behind the apartment building and a large clothing donation closet for its residents.  Under the playground equipment, the ground was covered with sand and small pebbles.  The ground of the playground needed to be completely removed.  Additionally, the clothing donation closet had become full of items that residents were not using and it was disorganized by size and style.  In addition to doing the labor for both projects, the First Baptist Youth group secured family-friendly rubber mulch to replace the sand and pebbles.  They organized the large donation closet by size and style and helped to make it more accessible.  Ms. Acree said, “The First Baptist Church youth ministry went above and beyond in giving back to their community via Havenwood.  Their efforts encourage our families’ success toward better lives and self-sufficiency.” 

In March of this year, Ms. Kailey Wever nominated Katelyn Matlock, Alex Griffin and Denise Faber members of First Baptist Church student ministry for their “dedication, consistency and passion for working with Havenwood’s children.  Ms. Wever wrote, “I can always count on these three teenagers to be at Havenwood when they are scheduled and they have even made themselves available at a moment’s notice several times when our other volunteers have fallen through.”  

The Outstanding Citizen Award program was initiated in January 2011 to recognize the exceptional volunteer contributions of Bentonville residents.  There are three award categories: adult, youth and community group.  Fourth quarter 2014 nominations will be accepted until December 19th.  Winners will be announced December 22nd.  The fall and winter season of thankfulness and giving is great time of year to recognize volunteerism.  To obtain a nomination form and additional information, please visit the City’s website at www.bentonvillear.com.