Join us in celebrating five AmeriCorps alumni who exemplify a commitment to a lifetime of service and bringing communities out of poverty. In honor of AmeriCorps VISTA’s 50th anniversary, we encourage you to read the full profiles of award winners on our blog, and share and comment on the ones that inspire you!
Together, our national winners represent every U.S. region, six states (plus D.C.), and eight programs supported by AmeriCorps VISTA members. They serve in a variety of impact areas including economic development, state governance, educational opportunity, health care, youth civic engagement, and employment services. Read our national press release, view a list of award winners below, and read our National Leadership Awards FAQs for questions about the awards and selection process.
- Denise Riebman, Director of Career Development and Alumni Services at the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration, George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Denise served in AmeriCorps VISTA at the Denver Indian Center (1994-1995) and has spent over 20 years in the nonprofit and higher education sectors, including time directing several AmeriCorps programs, focused on poverty alleviation, volunteer engagement and career development.
- Dr. John Baumann, Executive Director of Eugene Hearing and Speech Center in Oregon. Dr. Baumann is a physician, educator, and program developer with a long history of service. He was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Public Health Service and an Army Reserve Member. As an Oregon Asset Building Corps VISTA member (2012-2013), he collaborated with the city and a nonprofit to build a physical facility and coordinate services including a rural medical outreach program to make health care more accessible.
- Miriam Gillow-Wiles, Executive Director, Southwest Colorado Council of Governments. Miriam manages a region that covers 6,500 square miles and includes two tribal reservations, 10 municipalities, and five counties. She works to increase efficiency in local governments and find solutions to address community challenges. She served on the Western Hardrock Watershed VISTA team (2009-2010) and as an AmeriCorps member for the Southern Ute Community Action Program (2011-2012).
- Oscar Robles, Manager of City Learning Networks for US2020 in New York. Oscar works with city-based grantees to scale science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) mentorship throughout the nation to students underrepresented in this field: girls, students of color, and low-income students. Oscar began his career as a VISTA member at Our Piece of the Pie (2009-2010), and then served with the Public Allies AmeriCorps program in 2010-2011. He also works with Black Male Achievement and Opportunity Nation.
- Susan Paul, Communications and Community Programs Specialist for the San Diego County District Attorney's Office. Susan served as a VISTA member for the D.A.’s office (2009-2010) to reduce recidivism by developing solution-oriented initiatives and community partnerships. Susan now coordinates Youth Advisory Boards which allow youth considered at-risk the chance to address issues through public service campaigns. She previously served with the Boston Community Health Corps AmeriCorps program (2005-2006).