Agency recognizes milestones and presents honorary awards

Oak Bluffs, MA. (March 31, 2021) ‐ Martha’s Vineyard Community Services (MVCS) held its annual Staff and Volunteer Recognition Ceremony via zoom on Monday, March 29. The event honored one agency program, three employees, and two volunteers for their service dedication and exemplary performance over the past year. Employees reaching milestone anniversaries were also recognized. 

MVCS Chief Executive Officer Beth Folcarelli hosted the ceremony, presenting awards and recognitions throughout the hour-long event attended by 76 employees and board members. All attendees were given the opportunity to chime in with congratulatory remarks via video and chat. 

“The Board is proud of how these staff and volunteers adapted over the past year to continue providing services to those in need, hardly missing a beat, even though the limitations arising from the COVID-19 outbreak threatened our core service model of one-to-one and small group settings,” said Michael Goldsmith, Board President. “These nominations and awards, originating with the employees themselves, are evidence of the camaraderie and spirit of a great staff who were and are on the frontlines and who offer key social services for the Island Community.”

Below are recipients and excerpts from the award presentations: 

A Team Award – Early Childhood Programs
The A Team Award recognizes a team that works collectively to make change within their program and beyond. MVCS’ Early Childhood Programs, led by Director Heather Quinn, includes the Early Childhood Center, Head Start Program and Martha’s Vineyard Family Center. During the pandemic these programs have provided learning and activities virtually, and re-opened for in-person learning at a time when other services were closing or offering virtual spaces.

Above & Beyond Award – Jessica Tartell, Thrift Shop Manager
The Above and Beyond Award recognizes a person who consistently demonstrates dedication, hard work, and willingness to go the extra mile, no matter how challenging the demands of their job are. “Jess has truly gone above and beyond to ensure that our Island Community was cared for in every possible way during the pandemic including her fellow staff members at MVCS,” commented Liza May, Board Member and the chair of the Chicken Alley Advisory Committee. “She just pulled out all of the stops to support and care for her committed staff, volunteers, advisors, donors and customers.  Since Chicken Alley reopened in June, there are lines and lines of people waiting to get in–every day, in every type of weather.”

Diamond Award for Excellence in Services – Catherine Flynn, Contracts Coordinator
In honor of MVCS’ 60th anniversary, the Diamond Award for Excellence in Services recognizes an individual who has provided exemplary service in a very challenging year. “After more than three decades of service, Catherine’s commitment to MVCS and all of its staff, clients and community continues-stronger and with more resolve than ever,” shared Beth Folcarelli, Chief Executive Officer for MVCS. “She works each and every day with the best intentions for the agency, for those who support it, and for clients who are supported by it. Her work is of unparalleled excellence.”

Unsung Hero Award – Allyson Syslo, Job Coach/Developer for Island Employment Services
The Unsung Hero Award recognizes a person who exemplifies the mission of MVCS and is a team player who positively impacts those around them both inside and outside of work. “Allyson’s work as a job coach supports individuals with disabilities to find and sustain meaningful work, said Beth Wike, Director of Disability Services. “Allyson is committed and unassuming. We never hear from her all of the amazing contributions she makes; but, we see the fruits of her labor in the lives of our clients, their families, and our community.” 

Wiet Bacheller Volunteer of the Year Award – Barbara and Rich Ridel
The Wiet Bacheller Volunteer of the Year Award recognizes a community member(s) who has made an impact on MVCS through their dedicated volunteer work. Barbara and Rich Rindel donated hours of time and energy working on projects to assist with daily Thrift shop operations. 

# # #

About MV Community Services:
We are clinicians and social workers, psychiatrists, counselors, case workers, teachers and volunteers. Embracing community in collaboration with police and primary care physicians, the hospital and Island schools. People who share our belief in the worth and dignity of all. Every day we commit our unique experience, expertise and compassion to help our entire community be as vibrant, strong and healthy as it can be. When together we answer the call our community thrives. Learn more at