Volunteer Recognition Program

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The goals of the PMI Phoenix Chapter service awards are:

  • To formally recognize individual member contributions to the chapter.
  • To encourage volunteer contribution through recognition and incentives.
  • To visibly reinforce outstanding volunteer efforts as the basis for PMI Phoenix Chapter success.
  • To encourage new and existing volunteers to strive for performance excellence, thus allowing the PMI Phoenix Chapter to improve its value to the PMI membership and community.

Volunteer of the Month

Each month, the PMI Phoenix Chapter Board of Directors selects one “Volunteer of the Month”, and the recipient is recognized and announced at the Evening Chapter Meetings.

The “Volunteer of the Month” receives:

  • $10.00 Gift Card
  • A VOTM Certificate of Appreciation
  • With approval, recognition on the chapter website throughout the month
  • With approval, recognition in the Newsletter
  • Upon request, Employer Volunteer Commendation Letter
  • Upon request, LinkedIn recommendation

PMI President's Circle Award

All PMI Phoenix Chapter members are eligible to nominate a PMI Phoenix Chapter volunteer who has provided “exceptional leadership service” to the Chapter over a minimum period of 3 consecutive months. The nominee’s volunteer leadership efforts have resulted in significant positive impact to the growth of the PMI Phoenix Chapter. The winner is selected solely at the discretion of the current PMI Phoenix Chapter President and is awarded 1 to 2 times per year at evening PDM chapter meetings.


Lynda Stanton - Volunteer Award Winner for September 2018

Lynda joined the PMI Phoenix Chapter in 2017. She has been a volunteer for over five years, volunteering in the Phoenix Chapter elections and compiling Phoenix Chapter survey results. 

She became a volunteer to keep learning and to meet new people. What she has found most rewarding is getting to work through creative solutions that she may or may not see in her day-to-day work.  This creates skillsets and connections that may lead her to her next opportunity while making her better in her current role. 

Her advice to someone considering a volunteer role is “just go for it. You can always learn new skills and increase your experience.” 

Lynda lives with her husband, three dogs and one cat in South Scottsdale.  She is a volunteer mentor and member of the young professionals association at the AZ Animal Welfare League.  She loves all things animals and wants to pet all the dogs!

Rodney Jerger - Volunteer Award Winner for August 2018 

Rodney has been a member of PMI since December 2011 and has been a volunteer since 2013. Rodney relocated from the Denver Mile High Chapter so that he could be closer to his kids and grandchildren. His inspiration for becoming a volunteer stemmed from his mentors’ encouragement to give back to the community and be involved in the Project Management profession. 

Rodney has contributed to the Phoenix PMI doing audio-visual, slide deck and PowerPoint compositions within the Programs team. What he has found rewarding by working in this role is using new technology for remote locations so that the attendees get a live experience with evening Chapter meetings. 

Rodney recommends that PMI members get involved to meet other PMI members and to stay current on emerging Project Management developments.

Abhijit Ganguly - Volunteer Award Winner for June 2018

Abhijit joined the Phoenix PMI Chapter in January of 2017 in the role of Manager, Membership. This role is key to the chapter as he is the “first step” in the process for bringing on a new volunteer. He receives the volunteer application and interacts with the prospect volunteer to route them to the correct teams and to support any questions they have.

Abhijit has found the recognition and opportunity to talk and interact with fellow PMs most rewarding. He has been part of the membership and onboarding process overhauling initiatives. As part of the membership team, the team strives to provide a positive onboarding experience to every new volunteer. He has learned a lot by interacting with fellow PMPs during the chapter meetings.

Abhijit’s feedback to new members is that the PMI Phoenix Chapter provides an excellent opportunity to network with PMs and recruiters across the valley. As a volunteer, one gets various benefits like free leadership sessions, PDUs etc. Being involved is a great way to contribute back to the PMI and PM community.

On a personal note, Abhijit will celebrate his 20th marriage anniversary in November 2018. He has a teenage son who is preparing for the Air Force Academy application this year. On the weekends, he hikes around the Phoenix valley and recently hiked Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs, CO. He also enjoys photography and bike riding. He hopes, someday, to own a Harley and ride to Alaska.

Chris Garland - Volunteer Award Winner for May 2018

Chris is currently the Co-Director of the Scottsdale Breakfast PDM. Previously he served on the Corporate Outreach team.  His work with Roy Bloomquist has been rewarding, as Roy is very organized and works hard to get engaging speakers for the breakfast meetings. It’s also been rewarding to meet lots of other PMs in an informal environment. 

His message to members thinking about getting involved in the Phoenix PMI is that it is definitely worth the time and energy to volunteer. It gives you the opportunity to meet, work with, and learn from other PM’s. 

Chris has three adult children. His interests are music, sports cars, and dancing. He is a member of the Ferrari and BMW car clubs, as well as several dance groups.

Nelson J Irizarry - Volunteer Award Winner for April 2018

As the Director of Networking, Nelson enjoys seeking and booking great venues for the chapter’s networking events. The rewarding part of serving is seeing members enjoy themselves at each event, meeting new and recent faces, and awarding members at the end of each event.

Nelson’s advice to members is to get involved as soon as you can to feel more part of the chapter and truly network within the PMI. Working alongside great, experienced professionals has led to a mentor relationship while volunteering. 

For fun, Nelson has been a mobile DJ for over 10 years. Preforming for weddings, corporate events, clubs, radio, and birthday parties. When not spinning records, he enjoys modifying cars, music festivals, and the outdoors.

Gary McDermott - Volunteer Award Winner for March 2018

Gary has been involved with the Phoenix Chapter of PMI for about eight years. He has volunteered as the Manager of Publications for the last five years. He does a great job supporting the Weekly Bulletin and chapter mailings.

What Gary finds most rewarding in his volunteer work is the opportunity to work with a lot of different people. He thinks the best advice for someone considering being a volunteer is to “jump in and do it!”

Karina Jones - Volunteer Award Winner for February 2018

Karina holds the position of AVP Business Intelligence. Her goal in volunteering initially was to contribute knowledge and skills that she used in her job at that time. She has found that she gets more from her membership now than she did then. 

Karina has been involved in Survey Management and Business Intelligence. She first worked with the All Member Annual Survey. She then redesigned the Survey Unit into the Business Intelligence Unit and restructured the work that is done. 

What Karina has found most rewarding as a volunteer is Networking and how the work she does is utilized for decision making. Her feedback to those considering volunteering is that when you volunteer you can truly maximize the benefits of being a PMI and Phoenix Chapter member. She says “I have met so many different people in so many different sectors at a level that I would not be able to do if just attending chapter meetings or other sessions.” 

Karina works at ASU. She is married with a three-year old. She is interested in Nonprofit Organizations focused on giving access to education to children in need.


2018 Volunteer of the Month recipients:

  • September - Lynda Stanton, Director of Elections - Operations Team
  • August - Rodney Jerger, Manager of Evening Meetings Program Presentation - Programs Team
  • July - Jean Alberte, Manager of Evening Meetings Registration - Programs Team
  • June - Abhijit Ganguly, Manager of Volunteer Membership - Membership Team
  • May - Chris Garland, Co-Director of Scottsdale Breakfast PDM - Programs Team
  • April - Nelson J Irizarry, Director of Networking - Programs Team
  • March - Gary McDermott, Manager of Publications - Marketing Team
  • February - Karina Jones, AVP Business Intelligence - Operations Team
  • January - Andy Aiyer, AVP Finance - Finance Team

2017 Volunteer of the Month recipients:

  • December - Teresa Franco, Director Volunteer Recognition - Membership Team
  • November - Ken Roundtree, Manager Credential Study Group - Professional Development Team
  • October - Trevor Stasik, Manager Membership Ambassador - Membership Team
  • September - Ramon Diaz, Director Evening Remote Meetings - Programs Team
  • August - Shane Cretacci, Manager Social Media - Marketing Team
  • July - Sean Daly, Director Networking - Programs Team
  • June - Wes Giron, Director Elections - Operations Team
  • May - John Robertson, Manager PMP Exam Study Group - Professional Development Team
  • April - Brian Law, Manager Member Ambassador - Membership Team
  • March - Cerila Gaillard, Manager Member Ambassador - Membership Team
  • February - Deborah Caltagirone, Director Professional Development - Professional Development Team
  • January - Katie Ruzicka, Manager Volunteer Management - Membership Team

2016 Volunteer of the Month recipients:

  • November - Ted Simpson, Manager Chapter Voicemail - Operations Team
  • October - Arlene Chemello, Financial Liaison - Finance Team
  • September - Co-Winners: Chantie Feinman, Co-Director Social Media, and Nicole Langston, Co-Director Social Media - Communications Team
  • August - Tom Stinson, Webmaster - Communications Team
  • July - Brian Zeltins, Director Volunteer Management - Membership Team
  • June - Marcia Solochek, AVP Evening Chapter Meetings
  • May - Simona Budurlean, AVP Volunteer Services - Membership Team
  • April - Nikki Stein, Director Speaker Selection - Professional Development Team
  • March - Sierra Rose, Director Core Infrastructure - Communications Team
  • February - Rick Sowers, Director Evening Chapter Meetings (North) - Programs Team
  • January - Joe Joyce, Networking Manager - Programs Team

2015 Volunteer of the Month recipients:

  • October - Tom Thorn
  • September - Colleen Boles
  • August - Susan Wynn
  • July - Lisa Rodriguez
  • June - Gary McDermott
  • May - Krystle Kibler
  • April - Rodney Jerger
  • March - Jeff Mahoney
  • February - Denise Ribeiro
  • January - Jon Sears



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PMI Phoenix Chapter
PO Box 26226
Scottsdale Arizona 85255 

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