American Red Cross and Co-Operative Insurance Companies Announce Vermont’s Recipients of the “2018 Everyday Heroes Awards”

Everyday Heroes logo

Co-Operative Insurance Companies Proudly Sponsors Event Honoring Extraordinary Vermont Citizens

Every day, ordinary people make extraordinary contributions by putting their needs aside to help others in our community. The American Red Cross is honored to salute these unsung heroes. A hero might be a lifeguard who saved a drowning child, an ordinary citizen who performed CPR when a stranger collapsed, or someone who saved a neighbor’s beloved pets from a fire.

The Everyday Heroes Awards are celebrated all over the country at which the American Red Cross honors people who personify our mission of service and help in local communities. To celebrate acts of kindness in Vermont, the American Red Cross will honor local heroes at the 2018 Everyday Heroes Awards on April 11, 2018.

This year’s Vermont Heroes are continuing proof that one person can indeed make a lasting and meaningful impact. The 2018 Everyday Heroes Awards are presented by the New Hampshire / Vermont Region of the American Red Cross, Co-Operative Insurance Companies, and WPTZ NBC5.

The 2018 Everyday Heroes Awards will be presented :

When: Wednesday, April 11, 2018, from 5:30p to 8:30pm.

Where: Doubletree by Hilton, Burlington Vermont Hotel at 870 Williston Road, South Burlington, VT

Ticket Price: Single ticket for $30, or a table of 8 for $225.

Includes: admittance to the event and heavy hors d’oeuvres. Purchase tickets here: hampshirevermont/everydayheroesvt.

For information on sponsoring or attending this heartwarming event, go to

Questions can be directed to Stephanie at


Vermont Everyday Heroes Award Winners 2018

Gerald Hornung
Shelburne, VT  (Chittenden County)

JedGerald “Jed” Hornung has been volunteering for the American Red Cross for more than 70 years. Jed’s tireless work for the Red Cross began at an early age.  Jed took on leadership of his local Junior Red Cross (JRC) chapter in Oklahoma City.  After a series of city, state and regional elections throughout the Mid-West, Jed became the first-ever Youth Chairman of the National Advisory Committee for the JRC.  As its Youth Chairman, Jed traveled across the U.S. speaking to thousands of people on behalf of the Red Cross culminating in 1947, when Jed was the youth speaker at the National Red Cross Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, which was attended by more than 4,000 adults and 1,000 young people from across the U.S.  Today, Jed lives in Vermont with his wife, Jini, and continues to support and advocate for the American Red Cross.


Ilka Pritchard
Burlington, VT  (Chittenden County)

ilka In 2014, Ilka Pritchard volunteered for an event called the Spectrum Sleep Out, a fundraiser for Spectrum Youth and Family Services. Since then, she’s become one of Spectrum’s most dedicated volunteers as well as volunteering for The Empty Bowl, Spectrum’s other annual fundraiser. On Thanksgiving Day, you’ll find her preparing hot meals for Spectrum kids. In a recent blog post for Spectrum, Ilka wrote, “It is my wish that the youth we serve feel the love and care that we put into these efforts and that it gives them hope — because hope is something money can’t buy.”


Cameron Greene
Rutland, VT  (Rutland County)

cameronCameron Greene was outside having lunch when he noticed his friend, Joe Anderson, desperately signaling that he couldn’t breathe. Cameron recalled an emergency aid poster that used to hang just outside the school lunchroom, and, remembering its instructions, he began to apply abdominal thrusts, which dislodged the obstruction from Joe’s throat. While many adults take First Aid and CPR classes, wondering if they’ll know what to do when that critical moment arises, Cameron’s quick reaction resulted in Joe’s ability to breathe again.


Jeremy Dunster
Graniteville, VT  (Washington County)

jeremyJeremey Dunster was just starting his day, when his dog Carmen began to whine as if something was wrong. Jeremy took her outside to discover that the two-family apartment building next door to his home was in flames. After notifying his own family and calling for help, Jeremy ran to the burning building, where he forced in the door of the downstairs resident and helped him out of the building. He then fought his way upstairs through the flames to alert a woman and her teenaged son, who lived on the second story. Thanks to Jeremy’s heroic efforts and quick thinking, with a notable assist from Carmen, only one person was taken to the hospital with minor injuries, and the devastating fire claimed no casualties.


Norwich University
Norwich, VT (Orange County)
For more than a decade, Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont has been hosting student-driven semi-annual blood drives on campus. These drives are notoriously successful, and since 2006 they have collected more than 8,600 units of blood. In October of 2017, dozens of cadets from the University participated in a Sound the Alarm event in nearby Williamstown, Vermont where they installed 466 smoke alarms in local homes, making it the most successful single-day smoke alarm installation event in our New Hampshire / Vermont region. These events and so many more are made possible by Norwich University’s Center for Civic Engagement. The work of Norwich University students in their community is a shining example of youth leadership and academic engagement in service of others. Accepting the award on behalf of Norwich University are Meredith Halik and Jack Labonte, who have been instrumental in organizing the blood drives in recent years, and Aidan Gaffney who coordinated cadet participation in Sound the Alarm.

The Red Cross is Calling All New Hampshire / Vermont Residents for Nominations for Their “Everyday Heroes”

everyday-heroes-awards-logo Every day, ordinary people make extraordinary contributions by putting their own needs aside to help others in our community. The American Red Cross is calling on all New Hampshire and Vermont residents to nominate someone for the “Everyday Heroes Awards,” an annual event that salutes these often unsung heroes.

This year, the American Red Cross and MyNews5 are asking the residents of New Hampshire and Vermont to nominate a friend, a co-worker or someone they know for the “Everyday Heroes Awards” so that someone who has done something extraordinary can be honored for their selfless acts.

A hero might be someone simply lending a helping hand or someone who’s saved a life.

Possible nomination categories could include:

  • Good Samaritan (over 18 or under 18)
    • Citizen responsible for an extraordinary act of heroism or courage
  • Military member
    • Member of the armed forces (active or retired, commissioned or non-commissioned) whose lifesaving action went above and beyond the call of duty – this award may be awarded posthumously
  • Fire Fighter
    • Professional or volunteer fire fighter or emergency dispatch operator whose lifesaving action went above and beyond the call of duty
  • Law Enforcement
    • Law enforcement agent whose lifesaving actions went above and beyond the call of duty
  • International Services
    • Individual, group or company in recognition of their commitment to humanitarian efforts in other parts of the world
  • Animal Rescue
    • An animal that saved the life of a human, an ordinary citizen who used lifesaving skills to save the life of an animal(s), or to an individual involved in the care of animals.
  • Aquatics
    • Lifeguard or ordinary citizen whose lifesaving action was able to prevent a serious water-related injury or drowning
  • Medical Professional
    • Doctor, nurse or EMT whose lifesaving actions went above and beyond the call of duty
  • Community Impact
    • Presented to a community group, neighborhood organization or local company that consistently demonstrates a commitment to making their community a safer and more compassionate community
  • Community Service
    • Individual in recognition of volunteering their time to help others in the community
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
    • Individual in recognition of their lifelong dedication and consistent support to further a cause that benefits the community

(The above are nomination suggestions – each category may not be awarded.)


Everyday Heroes Nominees must meet the following criteria:
1. Nominee must be a resident of New Hampshire.
2. The heroic act/rescue must have taken place between December 1, 2016 and November 30, 2017.

Nominations are being accepted now through Dec. 15, 2017.

To nominate a Hero in New Hampshire, go to the New Hampshire nomination page.

To nominate a Hero in Vermont, go to the Vermont nomination page.

The winners will be honored at the Everyday Heroes Awards event in each state.

New Hampshire: On Wednesday, April 18, 2018 the Everyday Heroes Awards will take place at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, NH. The address is 70 Constitution Ave., Concord, NH 03301. The event will begin at 5:30pm and run to 8:30pm.

Vermont: Vermont winners will be honored at the Everyday Heroes Awards event on Wednesday, April 11, 2018 at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel. The address is 870 Williston Rd. Burlington, VT 05403. The event will begin at 5:30pm and run to 8:30pm.

Winners will be awarded in the company of their loved ones, and possibly the people they helped. Videos showcasing their stories will be shown for an evening of stories that align with the Fundamental Principles of the American Red Cross. More information on the event can be found here.

American Red Cross Announces Winners of “2017 Vermont Everyday Heroes Awards”

     everyday-heroes-awards-logo   Join Co-Operative Insurance Companies and the American Red Cross to Celebrate the 2017 Vermont “Everyday Heroes Awards”

Burlington Event Honors Vermont Citizens on April 12th

Burlington, VT. – Tuesday, April 4, 2017. — The New Hampshire and Vermont Region of the American Red Cross and Co-Operative Insurance Companies are honoring citizens in Vermont by celebrating “everyday people” and the heroic things they do in our community.

The Everyday Heroes Awards are celebrated all over the country at which the American Red Cross honors people who personify our mission of service in local communities. To celebrate 100 Years of Service in Vermont, the American Red Cross and Co-Operative Insurance Companies will honor local heroes at the 2017 Everyday Heroes Awards on April 12, 2017.

summer -croppedSummer Stoutes – Tinmouth, VT – Rutland County

On the 5 year anniversary of her husband’s successful kidney cancer surgery, Summer saw a post online by a mother who was desperately trying to find a kidney donor for her 29 year old son. Summer knew what she had to do. She donated a kidney to a stranger, and it’s been one of the most rewarding experiences of her life.


gregg cuGregg Laber – St. Albans, VT – Franklin County

Gregg is a volunteer for Vision Guatemala and has helped source, organize, and ship over 100 wheelchairs to the underprivileged in Guatemala. Gregg works as a community leader to engage local residents in helping to provide resources for people who are in need.


tess - CU for webTess Kennedy – Montpelier, VT – Washington County

Tess watched her husband “PeeWee” lose his life to cancer, and all the while was moved by how important blood donation is. Tess has turned her grief into advocacy and shares her story with friends and family to gain awareness for the need of blood and platelet donations. She says “Donate blood or platelets. It’s the single best thing you can do to help.”


Dr. Richard Bernstein – Jericho, VT – Chittenden Countyrichard - close cropped

After retiring, Dr. Richard Bernstein became an Advanced EMT for Richmond Rescue.  While there, Richard saw a need and started the Richmond Rescue Opiate Task force with a goal of providing a mobile needle exchange, training EMS providers, providing education at local schools, and working with the Richmond Police Department to have a year-round drug take-back program.


Steve Bova - CU for webOfficer Stephen Bova – Winooski, VT – Chittenden County

Officer Bova was one of the first responders of a two vehicle accident where one female operator needed medical assistance. Officer Bova began medical assessment and, when unable to detect a pulse, began to administer CPR. The rescue squad arrived and brought the patient to the emergency department. After follow up, the patient had made a full recovery and the emergency doctor had advised that CPR was responsible for her full recovery by keeping her body oxygenated.


The 2017 Everyday Heroes Awards will be presented on Wednesday, April 12, 2017 at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel Conference Center at 870 Williston Road, Burlington, VT from 5:30pm to 8:30pm.

Ticket Price: Single ticket for $25, or a grouping of 8 tickets for $175.
Includes: admittance to the event, hors d’oeuvres, and dessert. Purchase tickets here:

For information on sponsoring or attending this heartwarming event, go to . Questions can be directed to Kevin at or at 802-660-9130.

The Media is invited to attend this event.

Everyday Heroes, Co-Operative Insurance Companies leadership, Red Cross leadership, volunteers, and community sponsors and supporters will be available for photos and interviews. Scheduled to attend:

All Everyday Heroes Award recipients
Maria Devlin – Regional CEO, American Red Cross
Kevin Mazuzan – Vermont Executive Director, American Red Cross
Stephanie Couturier – Chief Development Officer, American Red Cross
Lloyd Ziel – Chief Communications Officer, American Red Cross


This year’s event is presented by the American Red Cross with generous support from our sponsors:

Presenting Sponsor

Co-operative Insurance Companies

Media Sponsor


Corporate Sponsors

Northeast Delta Dental

Community Sponsors


Mylan Technologies Inc.

PC Construction

Rutland Regional Medical Center

Vermont State Employee Credit Union

In Kind Sponsors

BAE Systems


Program Ad Sponsors

Liberty Mutual Group

Titus Insurance Agency


About Co-operative Insurance Companies:

Co-operative Insurance Companies are based in Middlebury, Vermont and have been meeting insurance needs since 1915. They are a member-owned, non-assessable co-operative committed to protecting farms, homes, autos and businesses through fast and fair claim service and local operations. They have an A.M. Best financial rating of A (excellent) and do business throughout Vermont and New Hampshire through a network of local insurance agents.  For more information, please visit

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies more than 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at