Spirit of Volunteerism Award winner announced

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Nancy Ausland
  • 114 Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Over 545 area community leaders, non-profit agency representatives and business people gathered to honor the 2012 Spirit of Volunteerism Award winners here May 8, 2012. The Helpline Center in Sioux Falls, S.D. hosted the luncheon where eighty-one honorees and nominees were celebrated. Among the award winners was Lt. Col. Kevin Callies, 114th Fighter Wing Comptroller, who was recognized with an Adult Spirit of Volunteerism award.

Callies was nominated by Junior Achievement of South Dakota for his work with this organization over the past nine years. Junior Achievement's goal is to empower young people to own their economic success and as a teacher, fundraiser and bowl-a-thon worker for Junior Achievement, Callies is a leader among volunteers. Callies was chosen to be recognized out of over 1,100 Junior Achievement volunteers in the Sioux Empire.

"Every time I teach a class I learn something new along with the kids." said Callies. "Using my expertise in finance to help them understand the value and use of money - locally, globally and personally, is very rewarding."

Callies was one of the original members who started the board for the Brandon Chapter of Junior Achievement. Classes on global marketplace, personal finance and ethics are taught at both the Brandon Middle and High Schools. Lt. Col. Callies has taken it one step further by recruiting others from the 114th Fighter Wing Comptroller Flight to teach. Senior Master Sgt. Matthew Geraets, Master Sgt. Adam Punt, Master Sgt. Aaron Levisay, and Senior Airman Sarah Callies are also instructors for Junior Achievement.

Junior Achievement uses hands-on experiences to help young people understand the economics of life. In partnership with business and educators, Junior Achievement brings the real world to students, opening their minds to their potential.

"I've done a lot of volunteer work over the years and sometimes I wondered if what I'm doing really makes a difference" said Callies. "I think this confirms for me that it does."