During National Volunteer Appreciation Week, April 16-22, the City of Tualatin recognized all of our volunteers and celebrated the vital contributions of service made by individuals and groups throughout the year. In 2022, one thousand six hundred volunteers contributed over 12,000 hours of service to strengthen the City, make significant improvements in the community, and keep Tualatin growing and thriving.
Each year, City staff nominate volunteers they have worked with over the year who have been truly outstanding. We are pleased to announce the 2022 Outstanding Volunteers of the Year:
Outstanding Lifetime Volunteer Achievement
Dale Potts has organized and emceed Tualatin’s Memorial Day observance for the past 20 years. He is a Navy Vietnam veteran who served as the Public Affairs Officer of the Aircraft Carrier USS Yorktown. After active duty, he remained in the reserves, retiring as a Navy Captain. His civilian career was primarily as the Oregon Public Affairs Officer for IRS
In addition to Dale’s contribution to the City, he has been a Chamber of Commerce Ambassador for over 20 years, a member of the Aging Task Force for ten years, and a voice for veterans and history at the Tualatin Historical Society and as a writer in Tualatin Life.
Outstanding Adult Volunteer
Shizuka Morse joined the library’s volunteer program six years ago as a student while completing her practicum in Portland Community College’s Library Assistant Program. Shizuka proved to be adept at every volunteer role in the library. From shelving to check-in, holds retrieval and collection maintenance, and now Story time, where Shizuka assists Librarians with the serious responsibility of being silly, efficient, and effective at helping our youngest library patrons learn to love reading.
Outstanding Youth Volunteer
Avery Walters has volunteered in five volunteer programs in the City since 2019. Avery has participated in TEAM Tualatin and Summer Library Teen, bringing the fun to summer and keeping our parks, trails, and green spaces healthy and inviting. Avery has planted trees, picked up trash, and helped spruce up the library. For the past two years, Avery has been a member of the Youth Advisory Council. In YAC, she has been active in the Concerts in the Park, the Climate Action Plan outreach, the Veterans Plaza, developing a wall garden for Tualatin Community Park, and being a strong voice for youth in the community.
Outstanding Volunteer Group
Tualatin High School MEChA, which stands for Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Azatalan, is comprised of Tualatin High School students who refer to themselves as Latino and Latina. But as MEChA’s Vice President, Aaliyah De La O, describes them, “We’re all from different places. It’s not just for people from Mexico. Many of our students are from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Argentina. So we’re pretty diverse.” While they may come from different regions and countries, MEChA’s students share the same purpose; to promote cultural awareness through music, dance, food, and fun.
MEChA provides a place for learning, socialization, and service. Led by Co-Presidents Jonathan Mercado and Joyce Gomez-Cortez, MEChA’s mission includes connecting students to opportunities to get involved and develop leadership skills.
In 2022, MEChA students volunteered their time and talents to Tualatin’s community events, volunteering at Blender Dash, Viva Tualatin, and Pumpkin Regatta. MEChA contributed over 145 hours of service to the City.
On behalf of the City Council, City staff, and the entire Tualatin community, we thank all our volunteers for making Tualatin a great place to live, work, and play.
For more information on our Volunteer Program, visit our website: www.tualatinoregon.gov/volunteer.