Two individuals with strong ties to the YMCA of Greater Des Moines have been named this year’s recipients of the Tom Hamilton YPartners Spirit Award.
Kathy Brewer, a donor and volunteer for the Waukee Family YMCA, YMCA Healthy Living Center, Walnut Creek Family YMCA and the Riverfront YMCA, was the adult recipient of the award, while Mattea Miller, a member of the Walnut Creek Family YMCA, is the award’s first-ever youth recipient.
Kathy Brewer has been involved in multiple YMCA branches in the greater Des Moines area. She has been engaged in a variety of volunteer leadership positions within the Y and has been an active campaigner for the YPartners Campaign.
Mattea Miller is an 11-year-old YPartners campaigner who is constantly reaching out to Y members, telling them the story of the Y and asking for their support. Over the past couple of years, Miller has helped lead Walnut Creek’s annual bake sale and has created jewelry and other items for that branch’s silent auction.
The Tom Hamilton YPartners Spirit Award is named for Tom Hamilton, a key leader, volunteer, donor, member and advocate of the YMCA of Greater Des Moines who died in 2011. For decades, Hamilton advocated the virtues of the Y throughout Des Moines, while raising funds that helped underprivileged children and families become part of the Y.
“Tom’s commitment to the Y never waivered and his enthusiasm and passion for the Y was evident to anyone who came in contact with him,” said Vernon Delpesce, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Des Moines.
The Tom Hamilton Spirit Award is given annually bestowed on a Y volunteer who has “a passion to tell the Y story, a drive to motivate other campaign volunteers, a desire to renew all previous donor pledges, the energy to find new donors to grow the fundraising campaign, and a commitment that never waivers.”
The YPartners Campaign is a local fundraising effort that helps ensure that everyone, regardless of age, income or background, has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Through this fundraising effort, the YMCA of Greater Des Moines strives never to turn anyone away due to an inability to pay.