On behalf of the Town of Hilton Head Island, I congratulate our citizens who recently received the Mayor’s Honored Islanders Award.

We are so grateful for their volunteerism and contributions that have helped make Hilton Head Island a great community.

Generally, with the help of our friends at Hudson’s Seafood House on the Docks, we host a dinner to thank these wonderful citizens and present them with a certificate. Unfortunately, with the coronavirus pandemic, we had to shift gears. We sent each of the honorees a gift certificate to Hudson’s and a plaque in recognition of their contributions.

Recent honorees include:

Mary Stuart Alderman: She previously served as chairwoman of the Honored Islanders Committee and helped select many great award recipients. I am proud to now place her among the honorees for her leadership of and work with the committee and her extensive service with many other organizations in our community.

Rosanne Ball: Through her volunteerism, Ms. Ball helped the Boys & Girls Club of Hilton Head Island and the Junior League sustain their services and provide a wealth of support for youths and others in our community.

Pat Savarese: With her skills as a translator, Ms. Savarese helped The Deep Well Project and Volunteers in Medicine better connect with their clients. Both of these organizations serve a diverse group of clients for which language may be a barrier.

Janet Weingarten: By founding Backpack Buddies and continuing to work with the service, Ms. Weingarten has helped address hunger in our community and fill a tremendous need for local children and families.

Sunni Bond: Ms. Bond used her skills as a genealogist to inventory and research the tombstones in many of our Beaufort, Jasper and Hampton county cemeteries. What a great way to preserve our local history.

Gloria and Allan LaCoe: This couple has volunteered with many organizations throughout community. They are best known for helping to establish and coordinate the annual Community Thanksgiving dinner at Hudson’s for anyone on the island who needs food or doesn’t want to spend the holiday alone.

Helen Hinds: Ms. Hinds spends endless hours working with the Deep Well Project-Christmas Toy Program. The program brings great joy to the children while offering the parents a true sense of dignity during difficult times.

Rev. Lillian Mitchell: Rev. Mitchell devoted her life to teaching and caring for young children at The Children’s Center, Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church Achievement School and the Historic First African Baptist Church. Thanks to her, many children across the island got a solid start in education.

John McCann is the mayor of the Town of Hilton Head Island. JohnM@hiltonheadislandsc.gov