|Retired IAM District 751 member and President’s Award recipient George Braun refurbishes toys as part of his volunteer work in the Puget Sound area of Washington.|
George Braun, an 81 year old retired Boeing IAM member from SeaTac, WA, received a President’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his years of service through the Machinists Volunteer Program (MVP), which is the community service arm of IAM District 751.
Braun regularly volunteers his time at several charities in the area. He refurbishes used toys at the Toy Rescue Mission in Tacoma so they can be given as birthday and holiday gifts to children in low-income families. At Northwest Harvest, he does everything from collecting money and food from donors at special events to sorting and repackaging donated food at the Northwest Harvest warehouse in Kent, WA.
“His commitment to the fight against hunger is deep, unassailable and very personal,” said Shelly Rotondo, CEO of Northwest Harvest. “George does not shirk from hard work.”
In addition, Braun is a kitchen volunteer at The Rescue Mission in Tacoma and regularly participates with other IAM members of District 751’s MVP Committee to build wheelchair ramps for homebound people across Puget Sound.
“George is someone we can count on whenever we have a project,” said Rob Curran, the chairman of the union’s MVP Committee. “Because of him, we’re able to help more people, and that’s really what our committee is all about.”
In all, Braun has donated 5,149 hours of his time to union-sponsored community service projects since 2006 – an average of 572 hours a year, which is the equivalent of working full-time for three months each year.
“Our MVPs do a lot of work in the community that improves the lives of other people,” said IAM District 751 President Jon Holden. “That’s what unions stand for – working together to make things better – and our MVPs are great examples of how that philosophy can benefit our communities.”
“Brother Braun embodies the true spirit of a Fighting Machinist. His hard work, compassion, and generosity are truly inspirational,” said Western Territory General Vice President Gary Allen.
The awards are given by the White House through the Points of Light foundation to recognize and encourage community service volunteers. Braun was one of nine IAM 751 members to be recognized by the White House for their community service through the Machinists Volunteer Program in 2014. In addition to Braun, Curran, Brenda Brammer and Chris Louie all received gold-level President’s Volunteer Service Awards, for having given more than 500 hours to community service projects; Vennie Murphy received a silver-level award for giving more than 250 hours; and Adrian Camez, Clark Fromong, Jim Hutchins and Terri Myette all received bronze-level awards for giving more than 100 hours.