Mary Carol Massonneau Receives Andrus Award for Community Service
Mary Carol Massonneau of Burlington was honored recently with the AARP Andrus Award for Community Service for her tireless work on behalf older Vermonters on many levels. The award recognizes AARP volunteers who made their communities better in ways that support AARP’s mission, vision, and strategic direction and that inspire others to volunteer. It is the Association’s most prestigious volunteer award.
The award is named for AARP founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, an educator and tireless advocate of community service and volunteerism. Andrus coined the motto, “To Serve, Not to be Served,” which remains part of the AARP credo to this day.
Mary Carol has been a longtime volunteer with AARP Vermont and has served various non-profit organizations throughout the community over the years. She began with AARP as an active member of the Capital District legislative team representing the Association at the Statehouse and monitoring legislation as it passed through the General Assembly. About 7 years ago she became a founding member of the AARP Vermont Champlain Valley Advocacy Team (CVAT) and is currently on the group’s steering committee. She has been a leader in all the group’s activities and particularly stands out for her work in reaching out to the community on AARP issues – from Social Security and Medicare protection to health care reform, fuel assistance, utility cases and more. Whether it’s tabling on Church St. or speaking to a senior center, church or her fitness class, Mary Carol brings an engaging, thoughtful and genuine approach to all those she encounters – as well as a wonderful sense of humor.
Her other community service includes 7 years as a volunteer Shelburne Farms and more than 10 years with the Elder Education Enrichment adult education program where she served as program committee chair and president during her tenure. She has also been active with conservation and literary groups as a volunteer. Mary Carol worked for some 23 years as a dedicated employee of Howard Center for Community Services as a social worker serving the needs of the developmentally disabled as well as the children’s service. Mary Carol is the picture of healthy aging and embodies the spirit and practice of a model community servant in every respect. She continues to be an inspiration to all those around her.
"Mary Carol has conducted over a dozen community outreach sessions over the past year on protecting Social Security and Medicare." said Dave Reville of AARP Vermont. "She has inspired other volunteers to join her in tabling at countless, libraries, farmers markets, and fairs on a host of issues important to older Vermonters. She is always the first to raise her hand when we needed help at an event or location," he said. "She is devoted to the community and is a model of healthy aging."