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 Steve Swett Receives American Red Cross Volunteer Award

Illinois Valley Community College part-time instructor Steve Swett received the American Red Cross Wesbury Award in honor of his 31 years as a volunteer in the Illinois River Valley and as the volunteer lead in La Salle County.

Swett has been the faculty advisor for IVCC’s Red Cross Club for ten years. He has coordinated Blood Drives on campus in the fall and spring as well as organizing a collection of holiday decorations for the victims of the 2013 flooding in Marseilles, handmade holiday card drive and sock collection for local veterans homes.

He also worked with IVCC’s Auto Club to have major servicing and bodywork improvements for Red Cross vehicles and trailers.

Swett also led the recent “Sound the Alarm” rally in Ottawa and he hosts a weekly Red Cross radio show on WCMY in Ottawa.

“When it comes to collecting volunteers, Steve is a force to be reckoned with,” IVCC Nursing instructor Laura Hodgson said. “He follows up on every lead and his excitement is contagious.”

Ken Cozzi, executive director of the ARC of the Illinois River Valley, described Swett as “… a dedicated volunteer who devotes hours of his time to the Red Cross mission.”

The Wesbury Leadership Award was established by the ARC of Greater Chicago in 1991 to honor of past board chairman Stuart A. Wesbury, a longtime friend of the Red Cross who epitomized humanitarianism in both his professional and volunteer life.

The award recognizes foundations, corporations, individuals and media partners whose efforts enhance the visibility of the local Red Cross and help deliver its services.

The Illinois River Valley chapter serves 1.1 million people in Kankakee, Will, Grundy, Kendall, LaSalle and Putnam counties. The Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 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 nonprofit organization dependent on volunteers and the generosity of Americans to perform its mission. For information, visit www.redcross.org/ILRiver or on Twitter @RedCrossILRiver.