It’s Wednesday! Time for another UWMS Volunteer Spotlight.

This week’s wonderful volunteer is probably familiar to many of you. The irreplaceable Mari Jo Parks has been a champion of children in need Valley-wide since 1997, when she founded the Mat-Su Special Santa program. The Special Santa program brings Christmas to families every holiday season. Mari Jo is also the founder of Halloween Hallow (everyone’s favorite warm, indoor trick-or-treat destination), and has organized the Mid-Summer Art & Garden Faire, Construction Career Days with UAA, and much more.

A past UWMS Board President, Mari Jo was the 2012 recipient of our Dorothy A. Jones award for her lifetime of dedication to our community.

Although Mari Jo has since retired as the CEO (Chief Elf Organizer) of the Special Santa Program, we have no doubt that her heart for giving and desire to change the world will keep her busy for years to come!

Thank you, Mari Jo, for your many years spent building a better Mat-Su! What a lasting legacy!

Photo: Mari Jo Parks receives the 2012 Dorothy A. Jones Award from UWMS Executive Director Stephanie Allen and former UWMS Resource Development Directory Cherie Shue.