The Johns Hopkins Gazette: January 10, 2000
January 10, 2000
VOL. 29, NO. 17


Quotes from the MLK Community Service Award Winners

Johns Hopkins Gazette Online Edition

Kathleen Bronson
Surgical IMC, Department of Nursing, The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Volunteers at a health clinic for the indigent and at a soup kitchen.

"One thing I know is, we all can make a difference, even in small ways. It might just be talking with someone who has no family or close friends with whom they can confide on a daily basis. Sometimes a person just wants to affirm that what they are going through is difficult, and they are a living, breathing human being."

Edward Cornwell
Associate professor of surgery, Adult Trauma Service, School of Medicine. Volunteers at the Police Athletic League's Ft. Worthington Center and speaks across the country on youth violence.

"Injury prevention in East Baltimore means preventing youth violence. It is symptomatic of the problems in the community for someone to be a gun-shot victim by the time he is 15. But trying to step in and help then is like trying to give a swimming lesson from the bottom of the pool--it is just too late. The Police Athletic League allows us to focus on activities where we can get our arms around these kids before it's too late."

Dorothy Dyett
Clinical documentation clerk, Medical Record Services, The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Volunteers at Open Door Church of God in Christ.

"My beliefs have let me see the need to tell children who don't know any better than to hold the image of a man with a big gold chain in high regard that there is a better way of life. It's about giving these children what they really need and making them more productive individuals."

Quentin Fisher
Assistant professor, Division of Pediatric Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, School of Medicine. Volunteers for Project SHARE and Project Smile.

"I have seen for myself the desperate need there is for medical materials abroad. People [in developing countries] have doctors and nurses that are very skilled and well-trained, but I know they are unable to do some things simply because they don't have the necessary supplies. I really enjoy working with community workers and volunteers to help deliver these supplies. That is my personal satisfaction."

Reggie Price
Support associate, Department of Neurosciences, The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Volunteers for the Amazing Grace Lutheran Church Outreach Ministry plus the William Paca Elementary School.

"I find that [as a youth basketball coach] you can relate other things to a game that is played extensively in the neighborhood. Through coaching, you can connect kids with teamwork and the importance of being a team player. I teach them that they have a position to play, just like in life, where there is a role you have to play, and what comes with it are rewards and consequences."

Harold Shinitzky
Psychologist, Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine. Volunteers at JHCC Teens' Talk and Hopkins' Club, spearheads school-based intervention programs and community-based presentations and serves as mental-health correspondent on ABC's Fast Forward.

"The adolescents who were coming into our program had already become involved with drugs, developed conduct problems and legal issues. We can't allow these kids to progress at a negative trajectory. My motto is that through working on prevention we have an opportunity to touch the future in a positive way. You put gas in your car, right? You don't wait for it to run out of gas."

Pompey Swann
Patient service coordinator, Department of Psychiatry-Day Hospital, The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Performs services through Triumph Baptist Church, which he serves as pastor.

"My biggest goal beyond preaching on Sunday is to be available to people in as many areas in their lives as I can. I will just get up from this desk and leave when someone is in distress or needs care. I just feel compelled to do that. That is my calling. Whatever I have to offer, whether it be a kind smile, some money, some food or just to talk, it's just in me to share with someone else."

Laura Totis
Senior laboratory technician II, Department of Biology, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. Volunteers for Mid-Atlantic D.O.G.S., known as MAD.

"The people who come in here to volunteer because they want to be a hero are not going to make it. I enjoy negotiating the problem-solving, working with the dogs and just doing the work. It is the same thing as if you asked a scientist why he studies a certain topic: It's just something I really enjoy doing."

Carol Dugan Wessner
Program manager, Institute for Policy Studies. Volunteers at Sandtown-Winchester Habitat for Humanity project, Citizens' Review Board of Children and the Cathedral of the Incarnation's Community Outreach Committee.

"[Of volunteering], people will often say to you, I mean not just to me, 'How do you do it?' I always say, You do it because you want to do it. I can't imagine not being at Sandtown on Saturday. I made a lot of friends down there, and I go with nearly everyone from my church as one big group. We are working together to build communities, and that is where I want to be."