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Meet Our Ambassadors

In the News

See one of our Family Health Center volunteers, Irene Mekker, featured in the Twinsburg Bulletin.


Our Award Winning Volunteers

The Volunteer Services Department held its annual recognition event on Friday, November 22 at Executive Caterers at Landerhaven to recognize outstanding achievements in volunteering. This year’s theme was “Around the World in 2,000 Ways” to celebrate the contributions of our 2,000 plus volunteers. Upon entering the ballroom decorated with flags and props from around the globe, volunteers were invited to participate in a raffle for prizes donated by local businesses, followed by lunch featuring international cuisine and the presentation of awards.

More than 320 volunteers, guests and Cleveland Clinic caregivers enjoyed the awards ceremony. Chief Experience Officer James Merlino, MD, welcomed all attendees and recognized the importance of the role Cleveland Clinic volunteers and employees alike share in providing care to patients and their families. Cleveland Clinic Chief of Staff Joseph Hahn, MD, also spoke to the importance of volunteerism at Cleveland Clinic, saying that our Ambassadors fill a crucial role that enables our talented care teams to do what they do best.

Congratulations to this year’s major award winners:

Bernadine Healy, MD, 10-Year Service Award
  • John Clough, MD
  • Delores Dunlop
  • Jim Nousek
  • Geraldine Daley
  • Daniel Lindner
  • Pat Vitone
4,000 Hour Society
  • John Balmat
  • Eloise Coxe
  • Julia Cassell
  • Suzanne Kucharski
Most Hours Award
  • Jordan Perlman
  • Angela Schurger
Lifetime Service Award
  • Ann Johhson
  • Janice Trentanell
  • Regina Morelle
Rising Star Award
  • Parastoo Bassiri
Delos Cosgrove, MD, Patients First Award
  • Kathy Taylor
Alexandra Razavi Humanitarian Award
  • John Balmat
  • Leonard LoPorto
Caring Canine and Handler of the Year Award
  • Faye Berkowitz (Asher and Tex)

Current Ambassadors

Want to hear more about what it's like to volunteer at Cleveland Clinic?
See what a few of our current Ambassadors have to say!

Tieisha Mitchell: 230 Volunteer Hours Main Campus - Junior Ambassador
Why did you select Cleveland Clinic for Volunteer Service?

I selected Cleveland Clinic for volunteer service because it is a very well known hospital with a diverse population of people throughout the Northeast Ohio area. Here at Cleveland Clinic, the caregivers are well-known for helping patients get well and I am proud to be a part of that process.

What do you enjoy most about your Volunteer Service?

I enjoy working and interacting with the patients during their visit at Cleveland Clinic. I enjoy seeing a smile on the caregiver's and the patient's faces as well.

Share a story where you felt your Volunteer Service made an impact.

I felt that my volunteer service made an impact when I served at the Children's in M33. I had a special job to deliver books to the children in need of love. I always saw a smile on a child's face. I feel that a volunteer coming into the rooms and delivering books to the children made them feel like Cleveland Clinic truly cares for them.

Pat Rayman: 2,595 Volunteer Hours Main Campus - Children's Volunteer
Why did you select Cleveland Clinic for Volunteer Service?

I work here in research and this was a way to be involved in the clinical side.

What do you enjoy most about your Volunteer Service?

I feel I make a difference not only in the children’s stay here, but often in the nurse's day as well.

Share a story where you felt your Volunteer Service made an impact.

Once I was staying with a little one whose Mom was late getting there. They needed to start a surgical procedure so the nurse asked if I would go with the child until the mother came. I actually carried the child into the surgical suite and held him as they prepped him because he had fallen asleep in my arms. It was a humbling experience to have a child trust me so much.

What would you say to someone who might be interested in volunteering at Cleveland Clinic?

Please do it. You will get back more than you give.

Ted Valvoda: 1,293 Volunteer Hours Main Campus - Information Desk Volunteer
Why did you select Cleveland Clinic for Volunteer Service?

As a former college professor, I was used to interaction with a lot of people and wanted to do the same in a volunteer capacity. As a person treated at various times at the Clinic personally, as well as having family members treated there, I was very familiar with the Clinic and looked upon the chance to be a part of it as very desirable.

My six years at Cleveland Clinic have offered me interaction with others, pride in affiliation with such a prestigious organization, and great personal satisfaction with the appreciation and respect that full-time Clinic personnel have shown to their volunteers. As a side note, my wife has recently become a volunteer also, working as a Spiritual Care volunteer. We both feel very satisfied to be of service to patients and visitors.

What do you enjoy most about your Volunteer Service?

Being really useful to others. Hardly anyone comes to Cleveland Clinic for fun, and as Dr. Cosgrove once said at one of our meetings, "Most who come here are scared." To help guide others, to ease their way around this huge complex, to make new friends with many Cleveland Clinic caregivers sends me home each week with a feeling of "I was really useful and helpful today." I have always felt that I get more from volunteering than I give.

Share a story where you felt your Volunteer Service made an impact.

Often I see people coming down the walkway from the garage with their appointment papers in hand, utterly confused, perhaps a bit overwhelmed, looking all around like deer in the headlights, and I call them over to the desk, greet them with a big smile and ask how I may help them. After they are underway, relaxed, smiling and saying "Thank you very much," I think that it doesn't get much better than that. I made a difference for those people. Calling the shuttle for folks who really need a ride down that long Skyway does the same.

What would you say to someone who might be interested in volunteering at Cleveland Clinic?

If you are thinking of becoming a Clinic volunteer, I urge you to get in touch with Volunteer Services and give it a try. Whatever skill or background you possess, this place is large enough and has enough variety to fit you. I would be glad to talk with you personally about my Cleveland Clinic volunteer experience.

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Interested in more information about our programs and opportunities?
Want to learn how you can become a Cleveland Clinic Volunteer?

For our Main Campus in Cleveland, Ohio or one of our Cleveland area Family Health Centers, please review the current volunteer opportunities and submit an application or call us locally at 216.445.6986 or toll-free 800.223.2273, ext. 56986.