Kellie Ehlers, a member of the Northwest Civic Association board of trustees became choked up during the June 7 annual meeting when she presented longtime Worthington City Schools colleague Margie Smith with the Anna Mildred Henderson Award.
Named for the founder of the NWCA more than half a century ago, the award that honors an outstanding community volunteer returned for 2017 after a four-year hiatus.
Ehlers said she had wanted to nominate Smith, who lives in Worthington, for the Henderson Award for several years, and finally did.
"Despite such a busy schedule, she always finds time to serve her community by helping those who are either unable to help themselves or just need a helping hand, and she goes about this in a very quiet and unassuming way," Ehlers said.
"Margie always elevates others, and quickly deflects attention. If someone compliments her, she quickly praises the person complimenting her. "She is humble, and she gives of herself naturally, as if she knows no other way to live. "I am honored to nominate Margie for the 2017 Anna Mildred Henderson Award.
"I believe that Anna and Margie would have been steadfast friends, because both believe that the most important thing is to 'pay it forward' by making many little differences in the lives of the young and old in our communities."
Smith volunteers with Habitat for Humanity and is a basketball referee with Special Olympics, Ehlers said.
In accepting the honor, Smith said those who take time for charity work do so to help others, "but we realize we get back much more than we ever give."
"Doing it is the reward," Smith said. "When you know someone is in need, never pass up the chance to help them."