Members from the 15 PTA communities in Greenwich gathered at the Board of Education to celebrate the achievements of the 2014 Essence Award winner.
"Today's event was to recognize excellence in volunteerism in the Greenwich Public Schools. This is the fourth year that we have held this event. It was started to recognize people who go above and beyond the call of duty, and make huge contributions to their schools and community," said Essence Award Chair Marlene Gilbert.
This year's winner was Gayle Hagegard. The five person selection committee awarded her for her work with recycling within Greenwich schools.
"We had a group and we went into all the elementary schools. We spent a week in each every day in the cafeteria educating the kids. We educated the teachers, we had materials to support the process, we worked with the haulers to change out the bins and scheduling of what was picked up, and educated the custodians on what went where," explained Hagegard.
Hagegard was one of five women nominated. Other nominees were involved with projects big and small within the school system.
"I'm on the executive board at the Central Middle School, and at North Street I have been running the Afters Program for years. I kind of do a little bit of everything," said Essence Award nominee Tara Butcher.
"They all contributed in many different ways to their schools. It was hard to pick the winner," said Gilbert.