Allison Pickard has been volunteering at Oakwood Elementary School for less than two years. In that time, however, she has made an indelible impact on the school and its students.

For her endless efforts, passion, and dedication, Pickard was named Anne Arundel County Public Schools’ Volunteer of the Year today at the school system’s annual Volunteer Recognition Tea.

“Allison is one of Oakwood Elementary’s greatest natural resources,” said Teresa Tudor, Senior Manager for AACPS’ Office of School and Family Partnerships. “There is almost nothing at Oakwood that she hasn’t touched in some way, and no task she has undertaken that hasn’t been done exceptionally.”

Pickard started as secretary of Oakwood’s PTA, and spearheaded a gardening initiative by securing sponsorships and lining up volunteers. She is now the school’s PTA president and continues leading the development of the school’s outdoor classroom project. She also has helped grow PTA membership and organized movie and wellness nights as well as a family walk to raise funds for the PTA.

More than 700 people attended the event to pay tribute to the school system’s incredible cadre of volunteers. More than 23,000 volunteers have contributed their time to schools this year, amassing a record 526,969 hours – 20 percent more than a year ago – in donated time. Using the nationally recognized hourly value of volunteer time, that equates to more than $11.5 million of donated time in county schools this year.

In addition to the Volunteer of the Year award, the following awards were bestowed:

Community Engagement Award: Maurica Simms, coordinator of AACPS’ Community Ambassador Program and a volunteer in many other community initiatives that support the academic and social development of children and youth.

Crystal Apple Award (best volunteer program): The Learning Garden, Broadneck Elementary

Regional Awards for Exemplary Programs

  • Annapolis & Southern regions: Backpack Buddies, Annapolis Middle School
  • Arundel & South River regions: Venture Crew 115, Central Middle School
  • Broadneck & Meade regions: Watch D.O.G.S. (Dads of Great Students), Pershing Hill Elementary School
  • Chesapeake and Old Mill regions: Chessie Reading Incentive Program, Pasadena Elementary School
  • Glen Burnie & Northeast regions: Forgotten Lunch Program, Woodside Elementary School
  • North County & Severna Park regions: OC2 – Outdoor Classroom Club, Folger McKinsey Elementary School

Volunteer of the Year Allison Pickard