2019 Adult Award Recipients
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2019 Adult Award Recipients


The Volunteer of Excellence is a National Award that is given to volunteers that have given outstanding, above and beyond service, either in direct partnership with girls or in supporting our mission delivery goals. This year’s recipients are:

Amy Baker   SU227

Angela Swafford   SU225

April Smith   SU230

Carol Winters   SU222

Deborah Ward   SU230  

Denyel Bond   SU218

Holly Howe   SU201

Jenna Johnston   SU213

Karen Kelsheimer   SU216

Kim Bennett   SU229

Linda Linzy   SU227

Michelle Segovia   SU207

Michelle Castle   SU218

Nicole Miller   SU201

Patty Juby   SU225

Sara Murray   SU213

Summer Waters   SU213


The Appreciation Pin is a National Award given to adult members that have given outstanding above and beyond service to at least one geographic area or Service Unit.

Quotes from the nominations/endorsements:

Emily Anderson (staff): “In every aspect of Ms. Anderson’s roles, she tackles it with passion for the Girl Scout mission.”

Erin Nestle (SU201): “She has not only focused the group to develop a highly content based club (Pleiades Astronomy Club), but she is aware of the value of using the club to encourage girls to join Girl Scouts not necessarily only as a troop.”

Graham Honke (staff): “He sets an example of working together and even hard jobs. Still having a smile on his face.”

Jessica Balyeat (SU228): “Jessica helps the girls gain courage and confidence necessary to conquer fears, try new things, and meet their challenges through our (GSNI-M councilwide) Outdoor Program events.”

Kelly Sistevaris (SU218): “Kelly’s volunteer work helps girls to learn by doing and leading the decision making on much challenge they want during the activities. She does a terrific job encouraging the girls and respecting their choice challenge.”

Kayli Savage (staff): “Kayli is gifted in her ability to relate to girls of all ages. She is an authentic person who the girls can count on for encouragement and support.”

Mary Davis (SU230): “Mary is a rare breed of Leader that does not have any children of her own but devotes her time to helping other children achieve their full potential.”

Michele Epp (SU210): “Michele implements the GSLE by having taken all the trainings available to her, and then turning that info fun experiences not only for her troop, but her community as well.”

Misty Oliver (SU228): “Misty doesn’t have daughters to be in Girl Scouts, yet gave many, many hours to ensure this cookie season ran smoothly and efficiently.”

Thomas Honke (staff): “Tom sets an example of leaving a place better than it was. He keeps the camp nice looking but also safe. No problem too big or small, he will take care of it.”

Rachelann Allmon (SU230): “Rachaelann embraces the concept of building girl’s confidence and developing skills. She allows the girls to plan trips and activities, work on conflict resolution skills, and empowers the girls to take charge.”

Shawna Woodlee (SU213): “Shawna has strong leadership skills, always making her troop meetings girl led. She is very helpful and willing to help other leaders with questions, if she doesn’t know the answer, she will make sure she finds it out for them.”

Stephanie James (SU201): “Stephanie’s ability to plan events within our community provides girl the opportunity to understand that they are not alone in Girl Scouting. Her events give them a chance to be leaders, take risks, and learn new things.”

Stephanie Stroh (SU201): “Through Stephanie’s hard work, the cookie cupboard ran smoothly during the cookie sale. Stephanie made many positive changes, allowing the cookie cupboard to run efficiently as well as providing cookie training for all community volunteers before the start of the sale.”


The Honor Pin is a National Girl Scout award recognizing adult members who have gone above and beyond the call of duty, whose service has had an impact on two or more service units in support of the council’s goals.

Barb Grumme (SU216): Barb has held many different roles within Girl Scouting over the years. Unlike some volunteers that leave when their daughters do, Barb does this because of her granddaughters and all of the girls of the Kosciusko area, but she doesn’t just stop there. She is also a council trainer, lending her experience, skills, and time to Girl Scout volunteers throughout the entire council. She has also been very instrumental in helping us to get our revised troop finance procedures implemented, lending her wisdom and knowledge to help with a very difficult process.

Darlene Hebble-Juengel (SU230): Darlene serves not only as a Troop Leader, but as the Volunteer Day Camp Director for SU230, Adams County. Under Darlene’s leadership, the camp has had an increase in the number of older girls serving in PA and CIT roles.  The program offered by Darlene has been quoted as being “fun, fresh, and always different.” When Darlene learned there was a desire for archery, Darlene became certified in order to provide this activity to the girls of her area. Thank you Darlene, for going above and beyond.

Jennifer Bradford (SU222): Jennifer has been a key volunteer at Fort Wayne Cookie Central for the past three years. She brings valuable insight in her support of the volunteers that are going through the cookie program because she has been there herself. Her cheerful attitude and willingness to help make her a true asset to the cookie central function. A fellow volunteer quoted, “She is always willing to take on another task, and she does them well.” Thanks for all of your hard work Jennifer.

Lisa Cashel (board member): Lisa has served as a member of the GSNI-M Board of Directors since 2012. She has served on a variety of committees, taskforces, and is currently the First Vice-Chair. She has been an instrumental board member. She learns about a particular area of expertise and applies it to activities and important decisions. “She makes things happen” quoted one board member. GSNI-M is lucky to have a board member like her.


The Thanks Badge is the highest National Girl Scout award an adult can receive in Girl Scouting. This award honors Girl Scout adult members whose outstanding service has impacted the entire council or national movement.

Megan Striegel (SU209): Megan Striegel coordinates a Cookie Cupboard in St. Joseph County, Indiana.  She opens hear garage to the volunteers of her area to pick up cookies throughout the sale.  As a volunteer in her area said, “she works hard, especially during cookie season, to put the girls first in Girl Scouts.”  Leaders who supported Megan’s nomination for this award cited her commitment to help all leaders with navigating the cookie program.  She is willing to go the extra mile to help a leader who is confused by a website, or unsure what to do next.  Megan gives extra time, beyond the Cookie Cupboard hours to provide whatever assistance a leader needs.  Megan and another leader even visited area cookie booths in celebration of National Girl Scout Cookie Weekend.  The ladies distributed water and candy to girls and adults to show their appreciation for their hard work.  As one fellow leader said “Megan is a phenomenal example of Girl Scout leadership at its finest because she demonstrates all that is Girl Scouts.” 

Reeta George (SU221): Reeta George is another devoted Cookie Program volunteer.  Reeta has been a regular volunteer at the Cookie Central in Fort Wayne for over fifteen years.  As one volunteer stated “She is a hard worker, and willing to do whatever is asked of her.  She has been an invaluable asset to the program running smoothly.”  Reeta patiently helps girls who come to cookie central, with learning more about the logistical side of this important program.  Reeta also helps to organize the storage room, and generally helping to keep the program running smoothly and efficiently.  Thank you Reeta for all of your hard work!


The Thanks Badge II was created to recognize those who have received the Thanks Badge, but their level of service continues to be outstanding and so out of this world that we needed to recognize them again! The Thanks Badge II is a National Girl Scout award.

Julie Spears (board member): Julie Spears has served as valuable member of the GSNI-M Board Directors and Chair of the Property Committee.  She previews future projects to keep our properties maintained and operational.  As a member of the GSNI-M staff said, “Her wisdom helps guide the best decisions to prepare our Council for years to come.”  Julie’s passion for the Girl Scout Program along with her knowledge about property issues, make her a superb asset in this important role.  Julie was a key member of the team which evaluated all GSNI-M properties after merger.  A Camp Logan Alum, Julie is also active in the Camp Logan Alumni group and was active with the 90th Anniversary weekend this past summer.  Finally, as a fellow board member stated, “Julie understands the need to bring together a great program, excellent facilities, wonderful leaders, and adequate resources to provide what today’s girls need.”  Thank you Julie for your continued commitment to girls!

Laurie Beard (SU211): Laurie Beard has served as Product Program Coordinator for Service Unit 211 in Steuben and Lagrange Counties for more than twenty years.  Laurie is detail oriented and always ensures that the Cookie Cupboard she oversees has an inventory that matches what it should have, down to the exact box.  Laurie also helps to ensure that debt is kept to a minimum and has had no troops turned in as delinquent in at least fifteen years!  Leaders who work with Laurie share how she makes herself available to leaders in a variety of methods and at a variety of times a day.  She always works to accommodate the various schedules of the leaders in her area.  Not only does Laurie work to ensure that leaders in her area understand the cookie program, she also works with staff to train her fellow product coordinators as well.  Laurie also goes above and beyond to help leaders who lack computer access or who have trouble with technology.  She will sit with them to enter the information in the computer, or will enter it in herself on their behalf.  Along with all of her devotion to the product program, Laurie also assists with community events and trips as well as facilitates new leader trainings.  Thank you Laurie for all that you do!  


The Heart of Gold is unique to Girl Scouts of Northern Indiana-Michiana. It is a council award for adult members that honors their long-standing service that has been outstanding in leadership while enriching the lives of girl and/or adult members. It celebrates those that embody the Girl Scout mission by leading through example and have given significant contributions to the organization’s success.

Cathy Gamez (SU220): “Cathy helps Connie with paperwork in Cookie Central. Lots and lots of paperwork. She know the routine and just gets the stuff done. She is here every Saturday so Connie doesn’t have to do it alone. While she hasn’t been your traditional troop leader type of volunteer, she has picked up on the lingo, the processes and procedures, and has been very helpful to every volunteer that has come in for cookies.”

Connie Frederick (staff): “Connie has given many, many years to Girl Scouting, never stopping when her daughter graduated, eventually moving from volunteer to staff in the Product Program area. Her name is synonymous with cookies in GSNI-M, having been involved from the very start with the cookies in hand and cookie central concept. Her dedication and her customer service will be missed, but we are sure we will never see Connie totally go away. She has Girl Scouts in her blood and we are sure to see her for many years to come.”

Jodie Brune (SU218): “Jodie has, on numerous occasions, gone ablve and beyond what was expected of her for the troop. Jodie shares her artistic eye and creative spirit with the girls when there is a craft to be done. She accommodates everyone and ensures each girl leaves with ne knowledge and smiling faces, eager to return the following week. Event thought Jodie had a daughter of her own in the troop, she didn’t put any girl above anouth. She provides a stellar example tor the girls of being “a sister to every Girl Scout.”  - submitted by her daughter, Jackie Brune

Lee Ann Ousley (SU216): “Lee Ann has held a variety of volunteer positions over the years, but when it comes the events of SU216, she really shines. Lee Ann works really hard to organize the events so that every girl and every troop has the opportunity to participate. For one event, a Father/Daughter event, every troop that year had at least one father and daughter couple and everyone showed up at Camp Logan despite the foot of snow that had recently fallen.”

Want to nominate a volunteer or adult Girl Scout? Watch for information in early January and be sure to mark your calendar for next year’s event: Saturday, May 2, 2020 at Camp Logan.