Guests at the April 22 Blaine Food Bank volunteer celebration spent the occasion donning wide smiles and offering words of gratitude to those who have committed years of service the community.
The event was hosted by the Volunteer Center of Whatcom County and took place at the Blaine Senior Center. Longtime volunteers Evelyn Bonallo and Jerry Bladies received The President’s Volunteer Service Award for lifetime achievement on behalf of the Corporation for National and Community Service after racking up a combined 17,180 hours of service at the local food bank.
The Blaine Food Bank marked the occasion by establishing the Evelyn Bonallo Blaine Food Bank Volunteer of the Year award. This year, Richard and Rita Sucola and Joe Porinello received the distinction.
The Jerry Bladies Spirit of Blaine award was also established and will be presented early next year. As the final cherry on top, Blaine mayor H
arry Robinson issued a proclamation, naming April 22 as Jerry Bladies and Evelyn Bonallo
Bonallo began working with the food bank when it first began serving the community more than 40 years ago. Bladies managed the facility for more than 15 years.
The local food bank serves on average 400 families, or 1,500 individuals, on a weekly basis.