Parks and Recreation seeks nominations for annual volunteer awards

Seattle Parks and Recreation is seeking nominations for the Denny Awards, which honor volunteer service to the city’s parks and recreation system. The deadline for nominations is Monday, Oct. 19, 2015.

The awards will be presented at a recognition ceremony from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec.1, 2015 at the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field.

The Denny Awards acknowledge and honor the crucial role volunteers play in neighborhood parks, community centers and recreation programs throughout Seattle. In 2014, 36,633 people volunteered for Seattle Parks and Recreation, providing 257,152 hours of service. Though the volunteers’ efforts are invaluable to the department, the Corporation for National and Community Service estimates that the monetary value of a volunteer’s time in the U.S. as $22.55 per hour. That means in 2014, volunteers donated $5,798,777 worth of time to Seattle Parks and Recreation!

Our volunteers do everything from pulling invasive ivy and planting native trees in our parks to coaching kids’ sports to working as docents at selected parks to serving on various advisory councils and boards.

“Volunteers are one of our most important resources,” said Superintendent Jesús Aguirre, “Without the help of the community, we could not run the first-rate park and recreation system that Seattle loves and depends on.”

The name of the awards reflects the early commitment by the Denny family to the preservation of parkland and open space for public use and enjoyment. David T. and Louisa Denny donated land that became the first Seattle park, Denny Park, in 1884.

We encourage nominations of youth volunteers, groups serving in parks or recreation, volunteers from Associated Recreation Council, individual volunteers, Friends, community and service groups and business or corporate volunteers.

Denny Awards nominees should meet the following minimum qualifications. The volunteer(s) must have:

  • Demonstrated exceptional stewardship to parks and/or recreation;
  • Provided stellar leadership related to enhancing and preserving parks and/or recreation programs;
  • Demonstrated a significant personal commitment of time and effort to assist Seattle Parks and Recreation; and
  • Gained respect of community peers for efforts to help Seattle Parks and Recreation.

The nomination form for the award, specific criteria and related information are available by contacting Junior Kitiona, Seattle Parks and Recreation, 206-615-0780, or junior.kitiona@seattle.gov. To download an electronic version of the nomination form, visit: http://www.seattle.gov/parks/denny_awards/.