Army soldier receives volunteer award

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Cal Groom honored as Volunteer of the Year.

by Charles Desiderio –

Nevada First Lady Dawn Gibbons (left), Calvin Groom (center) and Stephanie Wrightsman. –Photo by Dianemarie Collins

AmeriCorps recently honored Calvin Groom, a long-time Salvation Army soldier, as its AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer of the Year for the state of Nevada. Groom currently soldiers at the Las Vegas Citadel Corps, led by Major Michael and Captain Susan Nute.

AmeriCorps Vista is a national service program designed specifically to fight poverty; VISTA has been fighting poverty in America for more than 40 years.

Groom is the AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer assigned to Emergency Disaster Services, including all emergency disaster services for Clark County. The Salvation Army has purchased a state-of-the-art emergency canteen, which Groom takes to emergencies and other events throughout southern Nevada and southern California.

He reports to Duane Sonnenberg, Emergency Disaster coordinator and director of Grants and Special Projects.

Groom has been the moving force in interaction between county and city disaster teams, including the fire department, the police department, and Homeland Security. He currently serves on the Citizens Corps Council By–Laws Committee for the Department of Homeland Security.

Cal received the award at a ceremony on May 12 in Carson City, Nev., at the Governor’s mansion. Nevada’s First Lady, Dawn Gibbons, and Stephanie Wrightsman, who represented AmeriCorps for the state of Nevada, presented the award.

A Salvation Army soldier for 34 years, Groom has served in the Del Oro, Alaska and Southwest divisions. Currently, he is treasurer for the Las Vegas Citadel Corps.

Groom, an amateur radio operator, heads up The Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network. He is also the assistant emergency coordinator for the Amateur Radio Relay League for the State of Nevada emergency communications.

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