Stafford Seeking Nominations for Florence D. Helms Award

Stafford County is pleased to announce the opening of the 2024 Florence D. Helms Award nominations. This award was originally established in 1975 in memory of Florence D. Helms, who made significant contributions to the youth of Stafford County. It is the highest annual award given to an individual and/or organization that has made significant lifetime volunteer contributions to the youth of Stafford County.

“We could not provide many of the services we do without the generous assistance of our wonderful volunteers,” said Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, Meg Bohmke, Falmouth District. “Florence Helms led the way for parks volunteers and this award recognizes those who have carried on in her spirit."

Helms, a registered nurse, passed away unexpectedly in 1975 of cancer but left her mark on the youth of Stafford County. As an active member of the Parks and Recreation Commission, she was instrumental in establishing a volunteer program of medical examinations by doctors for sports programs in the area. Helms was also active in the early years of growth and development of the Stafford County Department of Parks and Recreation. This award has been given to individuals and organizations who have made outstanding contributions in recreation, education, guidance, health, or other fields in which the service contributed to the character development of the youth of Stafford County.

In keeping with the spirit of the Florence Helms Award, two annual awards may be given:

  1. An award in recognition of an individual for lifetime volunteer dedication and contribution toward the development of youth of Stafford County
  2. An award in recognition of a group/organization that has provided support and made outstanding lifetime volunteer contributions toward the development of youth of Stafford County

The criteria for selecting the winner include: years of volunteer service (20 years minimum), degree of dedication, fruits of accomplishments, and degree of interest and concern for the youth with whom the candidate/organization has been associated.

To be eligible for consideration, completed nomination forms must be returned to the Stafford County Department of Parks, Recreation, and Community Facilities office no later than January 31, 2024. Please visit www.staffordparks.com or call 540-658-4872 to obtain a nomination packet. Nominations may be submitted digitally at www.staffordcountyva.gov/florencehelmsaward.

Past winners include:

  • SERVE Youth and Community Service
  • Wendy Harris Art Education, Youth Service
  • Rose M. Crocco Youth Literacy and Community Service
  • Evelyn Dittman Youth and Community Service
  • American Legion Post 290                         Youth Athletic Programs
  • Daniel Visone Youth Sports and Community Service
  • Carol F. Lysher Youth and Community Service
  • Captain Steve Cary and Tim Doyle Intellectually/Physically Disadvantaged Youth
  • Rappahannock Big Brothers Big Sisters Guidance and Mentoring of Youth
  • Walter S. Osburg Youth Sports
  • Michael H. Robinson Scouts and Youth Sports