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Volunteer Awards

Last Updated on Friday, January 29, 2016

Many words come to mind when describing a volunteer: devoted, inspiring, passionate. But those words feel pale and generic when faced with the deep motivation and strength that makes up the members of the Preeclampsia Foundation's volunteer core. From 2007 through 2013, the Preeclampsia Foundation selected a single volunteer that exemplified the Foundation's mission and awarded them with the Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year at the annual Saving Grace - A Night of Hope benefit. Beginning in 2014, we created three new Volunteer Recognition award categories to reflect the growing nature of their volunteer program, which now includes over 800 active volunteers across the country.

Candidate are nominated by their fellow volunteers on eight qualities that exemplify the highest caliber of volunteer: Teamwork, Advocacy, Need, Initiative, Achievement, Impact, Time & Mentoring.

Volunteer Award Recipients:

Dawn Detweiler, 2015 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"It means so much to be a part of efforts that are really influencing positive change – especially with my daughter’s future in mind. I appreciate all of the volunteers, staff, and “friends of the cause” who are also committed to making a difference together.”

Read more about all of these amazing volunteers in our 2015 press release.


Stephanie and Marissa Steiner, 2015 Promise Walk Coordinators of the Year

"I am honored and proud to receive this award with my daughter Marissa, and to know that our hard work is making a difference, not only in New Jersey, but nationwide as well. So special to share this with my miracle baby. So proud of her dedication, compassion, and hard work.” - Stephanie Steiner

"I couldn't be happier with how our walks have grown and how much awareness is being raised. I hope that our walk will continue to make a huge difference in the community and impact the lives of many people to help find a treatment for my generation." - Marissa Steiner


Brandi Bigelow, 2015 Angela Little "Spirit of Giving" Award

"I am a team-oriented person by nature. I love to see others succeed. There is so much negativity in the world these days, my goal is to encourage others and lift their spirits. I never thought I could receive an award for simply being kind and passionate about raising awareness for a disease that could have taken my life. It is very heartwarming to know that I have made an impact on people.

Denise Lang, 2014 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"Volunteers and fellow survivors provided me with hope and encouragement when I needed it most and I endeavor to do the same for others. I cannot change what we experienced, but I can do something positive with the experiences.”

In 2014, we expanded our Volunteer Recognition Program to include Walk Coordinator of the Year, Promise Walk Coordinating Team of the Year, and the Angela Little Spirit of Giving Award.

Read more about all of these amazing volunteers in our 2014 press release.


Sarah Hughes, 2014 Promise Walk Coordinator of the Year

"My most gratifying moments are always when I meet the walkers; when I look out into the crowd at the walk and see everyone that has come together in an effort to raise awareness. There are no words to describe how wonderful that feels. It's those moments when I am reminded why I volunteer for the Preeclampsia Foundation. At the end of the day, it's all about keeping my eye on the real prize: raising awareness.”


Melanie DalPonte, Jasmine Mago, Nikki Mather, Johanna Aiken, Elizabeth Pebelske and Jill Siegel, 2014 Promise Walk Coordinating Team of the Year

"All of us are preeclampsia and/or HELLP survivors, but we are six different examples of how the disease can strike mothers and babies at different gestations, with varying complications, outcomes and long-term ramifications. We often say we are members of a club we never wanted to join! Our goal is to make the Chicago Promise Walk and 5K bigger and better each year by reaching more families affected by preeclampsia, spreading awareness and raising funds to help find a cure."


Rosemary Jorden Best, 2014 Angela Little "Spirit of Giving" Award

"I’d love to continue the tradition of the Promise Walk Quilts. Through the years, the quilts have been a healing outlet for so many. Each square of fabric represents a life lost or a life touched by preeclampsia. The quilts travel and are displayed at many of the Promise Walk locations. It’s important for those who contributed a square to see the finished quilt. Many have expressed how therapeutic it is to create a square, and see their square become part of a large quilt. The quilts join pieces of fabric, but they also joins lives and tells so many stories. Each quilt has been created by many, many hands with much love and care. I believe that the quilts make an indelible impression on those who see and touch them.”

Johanna Aiken, 2013 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"I look back on my life and realize how lucky I am... I will never forget what has happened to me, and strive to ensure others are aware of the signs and symptoms, so they hopefully, will never have to experience preeclampsia and/or HELLP syndrome and to be a part of a club that no one chooses to join.”

Nicole Purnell, 2012 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"I work to help families make sure this doesn’t happen to them. I believe that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I reflect back on the short life of my son and know that I never would have made such a difference if it wasn’t through the loss of my son. He might be gone, but he lives on in me and in the work I do… His life wasn’t wasted and neither will mine be.”

Becky Sloan, 2011 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"I look forward to the day when preeclampsia and other complications of pregnancy are relegated to history books because research has found preventions and solutions, and the education of women and of members of the medical profession has eliminated needless suffering and sorrow. Hope is what we all need; hope is what this organization provides."

Jill Siegel, 2010 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"The commitment and passion behind this organization continues to amaze me and I am humbled to have been singled out among the many talented volunteers who give a portion of their lives to helping educate and save the lives of others.”

Kara Boeldt, 2009 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"I consider it a privilege to volunteer for the Preeclampsia Foundation. It’s personally rewarding to be an advocate for those who have yet to experience preeclampsia, and a voice for those who are no longer with us."

Caryn Rogers, 2008 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

"My true reward comes from the opportunity to help so many other women who have been touched by the nightmare of preeclampsia. As we often say, knowledge is power and I try my best to make sure that the latest scientific information is accessible to everyone."

Kathy Maguire, 2007 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

Ms. Maguire served in a volunteer role as Director of Volunteer Services and was National Co-chair of the 2007 Walk-a-thons. She has served as a member of the Foundation's Board of Directors since 2011.

Laura Muller, 2006 Hope Award for Volunteer of the Year

Ms. Muller volunteered in many different capacities, including online Community Forum moderator, webmaster and forum administrator, essentially creating the Forum infrastructure that has supported thousands of families over the years.



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