Friday, April 11, 2008

Putting in the hours

Ketchum resident honored for volunteer service

Express Staff Writer

Cindy Jesinger, left, stands with her son, Lt. Joseph DiFrancesco, right, in Washington, D.C. Jesinger was awarded a Presidentís Volunteer Service Award for giving more than 4,000 hours of her time. Photo by

If you worked eight hours a day, five days a week, for an entire year, taking no time for vacation, the end result would be just over 2,000 hours, just about half of what Cindy Jesinger has given to volunteer work.

The effort undertaken by Jesinger, who lives in Ketchum with her husband, Rick, received significant recognition when she was awarded the President's Volunteer Service Award on April 5.

The award is a result of a challenge from President George W. Bush to all Americans to make time to help neighbors, communities and the nation through service. This included a call for each person to dedicate at least 4,000 hours to volunteer service over the course of his or her lives.

The President's Award was created as a way to honor those who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service.

Without a doubt, Jesinger has done just that.

Jesinger is an active volunteer with the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Wagon Days, the Community School Barn Sale and the Sawtooth Botanical Garden.

And on top of that she managed to lead the nationally recognized and highly successful volunteer efforts during the Castle Rock Fire as the Wood River Valley's Volunteer Coordinator.

This led the Snake River Council, for the first time ever, to present a national lifetime service award, which Jesinger received during a ceremony in Twin Falls.

This, however, has done little to temper Jesinger's altruism, as she now serves the members of the U.S. Congressional Delegation as Executive Director of the Congressional Award Council of Idaho, promoting a culture of volunteerism among the state's youth.

Her husband, Rick, along with fellow Ketchum resident Stanley Kwok, received an Adult Gold President's Volunteer Service Award for providing at least 500 hours of service to their community during 2007.

As well, Amara DiFrancesco from Ketchum received a Young Adult Gold President's Service Award.

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