Tami and Richard Norgrove Jr., Mary St. Clair selected as this year’s recipients

Healdsburg residents Tami and Richard Norgrove, Jr. and Mary St. Clair were honored Monday, Oct. 19, with the Marie Sparks Memorial Award, an annual award that recognizes the volunteer efforts of locals.

The Marie Sparks Memorial Volunteer Award was created in 1995 following Sparks’ death. The Healdsburg City Council wanted to create an opportunity for Sparks to be remembered for her “unselfish spirit” and her caring nature.

Born in 1914, Sparks is remembered as a woman of compassion, vision and grit. As described by the agenda item packet, Sparks was a, “A no-nonsense kind of person. Marie saw needs in our community ranging from seniors to children and animals.”

A selection committee composed of previous Sparks Award recipients recommended the Norgroves and St. Clair as this year’s award winners.

Tami and Richard Norgrove, Jr. have been involved with community volunteer work for over 20 years.

“Richard Jr. has been on the parks and recreation commission, the volunteer fire department, the Healdsburg Kiwanis and the Healdsburg Little League,” said Anna Grant, the award presenter and the senior services supervisor with the Healdsburg Senior Center.

Norgrove Jr. has also coached and been a supporter of CYO youth basketball at St. John’s School.

Norgrove’s wife, Tami, has also participated in several community and volunteer organizations such as the Soroptimist Club, and the Healdsburg Little League Fundraising Committee. 

She’s also helped out with high school sports, the Raven Theatre’s Dancing with the Stars competition and the Healdsburg Science Fair.

“Tami continually broke records each year — raising over $20,000 in community support for the non-profit youth baseball— and was the winner of Dancing with the Stars. Tami has been on the Healdsburg High School Project Graduation celebration committee for five years and is the current president, raising money and planning the senior class safe and sober grad night,” the agenda item packet states.

For the past 10 years, St. Clair has spearheaded the Healdsburg Supporting Our Soldiers (SOS) program. Through this program, Clair and community members have packed and sent over 3,640 boxes filled with food and other necessities like socks to soldiers overseas.

Each year, Clair spends time collecting and boxing goods in order for packages to be shipped to soldiers. She also received a tremendous amount of support from those wanting to help and donate goods.

“On the evening of Jan. 24, 2019 at the St. John’s School gym, the greater Healdsburg community packed 200 boxes ‘supporting our soldiers’ in harm’s way. The funds to pay for the cost of the contents and for shipping was donated by hundreds of local members and the boxes were mailed Jan. 26,” according to the agenda item packet.

Clair kicked off SOS when she started shipping boxes to her son’s company in Iraq.

“Thank you so much for all of your dedication and it is a real pleasure to be able to recognize you on this day,” Grant said of the winners during the Oct. 19 Healdsburg City Council meeting.

Councilmembers also thanked the Norgroves and St. Clair for their work and commitment to community.

“I would like to say, ‘Thank you’ on behalf of the community,” said Healdsburg Mayor Evelyn Mitchell. “It’s people like you that make our community as great as it is and my heart is warm listening to stories, so I just want to say thank you so much for everything.”

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