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A Special Recognition - Sandra Voltero By Michele Nichol

Sandra Voltero joined the BVRC in 2006 and was elected to the BVRC Executive Committee (EC) in 2012 as the EC Chairperson. As Sandra prepares to pass the torch to the new EC Committee, the BVRC and the Board of Health would like to thank her for her dedication to the BVRC and commitment to public health education.

In addition to serving on the BVRC EC, Sandra also served as Chairperson of the Training and Recruitment Subcommittees. Over the years, Sandra reached out to numerous speakers and trainers to bring useful education and trainings to offer to our volunteers. Sandra recruited trainers in areas such as emerging infectious disease, domestic violence awareness, patient transferring, communicating with the deaf and hard of hearing, and many more. Sandra was also very committed to finding new and innovative ways to recruit volunteers. She developed the recruitment plan of reaching out to the public by promoting the BVRC through canvassing of local businesses to display BVRC promotional materials such as pamphlets and posters. Sandra's recruitment project is now a yearly activity that has yielded great results.

In 2014, Sandra came up with the concept for an educational television production on health, wellness, and safety for the public. She trained with Burlington Cable Access Television (BCAT) on the many phases of production and brought in BVRC volunteers to help run a local cable access show. The show “Be Prepared” aired in 2016 on BCAT. The program supported the mission of the BVRC to assist and support the Board of Health in public health initiatives. Using her local connections, Sandra was able to interview professionals in many different fields for the show and, in addition, had many of those professionals speak to BVRC volunteers on their areas of expertise. Acting as the producer, creative director and host of “Be Prepared”, Sandra educated the public by assembling panels of specialists in various fields to discuss topics of interest on how to be prepared on matters of health, wellness and safety. The program ran through 2017 and covered a variety of interesting topics such as Disaster Preparation, Importance of Vaccines, Elder Abuse, Healing Practices, Poison Prevention and Food Safety, Domestic Violence, Emerging Infectious Diseases and more. Since the inception of the show, Sandra put in over 350 hours working on BCAT. In 2018, Be Prepared won a BCAT Viewer’s Choice Award and Sandra won an awards for Producer Excellence. 

In 2016, Sandra attended the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) Emergency Preparedness Summit. From that conference, she brought back useful information that the BVRC used for future planning and decision-making. For years, she played an active role in BVRC meetings, providing the members with updates on EC and Subcommittee activities. Sandra felt the volunteers deserved recognition and was instrumental in starting the annual volunteer appreciation dinner.

Sandra also spent many hours assisting at the Board of Health office as part of the senior citizen property tax work off program. During the pandemic, Sandra supported Board of Health staff during covid-19 and flu vaccination clinics by answering phone calls and questions from the residents and the public. Her assistance during the pandemic was greatly appreciated.  In her free time Sandra is an active member of the Council on Aging and enjoys spending time with her daughter. She recently got a new puppy. Although Sandra is stepping down from the EC after so many years of dedicated volunteering, she plans on still being an active BVRC volunteer and is already looking into starting up Be Prepared again.