It is with great pleasure that Sentinel Kiwanis announces the recipients of the Lyle R. Heath Community Service Award for 2016.

Adult Award presented to:

David Watt

Nominated by Staci Hedrick, Teacher at Frenchtown Elementary

David Watt retired from the Navy in 2003 and has been an active volunteer and mentor in senior organizations RSVP and Foster Grandparent Program in the schools first in Cascade County and since 2007 in Missoula County.  He is an effective ambassador at building relationships between senior citizens, children, parents and communities.  Referred to as Grandpa Dave, he has spent countless hours with Frenchtown's summer school program, active in the classroom, Missoula Head Start and seasonal summer Space Camp at YMCA.  He uses simple hands on math and logic games to motivate kids and is always willing to show people of all ages his skill building games for raising skill levels and esteem in children of all abilities.  At 70 years plus young, Dave never stops learning or giving.  Dave has served through RSVP at Ronald McDonald House and Franklin Elementary School.  He's served with Montanans for Soldiers Project, YMCA, MCAT Summer Youth Camps and has a history of volunteerism with St. Patrick Hospital.  David takes pride in teaching about the American flag on Flag Day and has spent over 100 hours of service in Ms. Hedrick's class just this school year!   His devotion to country, community and children is apparent.   Congratulations David!

Youth Award presented to:

Jessica Beers

Nominated by Roe Erin, YWCA Missoula GUTS! Program
At the age of 17, Jessica has already proudly served the Muscular Dystrophy Association for the last ten years!   Jessica spent 2 years as the MDA Montana state Ambassador educating people around the state on the importance of muscular dystrophy camp and the impact it can have on children.  She has served 3 years with National Coalition Building Institute and has participated in camp and co-led school anti-oppression training sessions.  Jessica has participated in Youth Forward and Girls Using Their Strengths (GUTS!) for four years, participated in and led Respect Club at Big Sky High School for 3 years, served as Health Science Academy Ambassador, is a member of Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) and works with Harley Davidson for fundraising efforts for various organizations.  Whew!  Jessica is "one of the most exceptional humans I've ever met" says Roe in her nomination.  "She is 17 and is deeply wise, has an endless amount of compassion and patience for others and is incredibly smart....Jessica is an active community member who knows that we need a lot of help in order to make the world a better place and she'll be the first one to volunteer. ...she represents all the qualities that non-profits want in a volunteer:  dependable, committed, optimistic, compassionate and self-aware."  Congratulations Jessica!

Our Runners Up:

Adult Award Runner Up is Minkie Medora

Nominated by Gayle Hudgins, U of M School of Pharmacy

Minkie has spent much of her life professionally and personally at the local, state and national level on a quest to end hunger in a country with so much wealth.   Minkie helped transition Garden City Harvest from a small grant funded program to the non-profit corporation that exists today.  She was also instrumental in starting nutrition education in the schools and implementing the national CATCH program in our schools. What a remarkable history of service!  Thank you Minkie!


Youth Award Runner Up is Nikolas (Niko) Medeiros

Nominated by LeAnn Dolly-Powell, Special Olympics Montana

Niko was nominated for his work with Special Olympics of Montana as a Certified Alpine Ski Coach, Certified Unified Sports Coach, Unified Partner, and member of State Youth Activation Committee.  "Niko has never asked 'what's in this for me'.  He simply serves because he wants to and knows it is what will make the world a better and brighter place."  Thanks, Niko!