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Citizen of the Year

 

SAR Bronze Good Citizenship Medal

Good Citizenship Medal

Fairfax Resolves promotes and recognizes local citizens who have distinguished themselves by demonstrating outstanding service to the community in the present or past. The award emphasizes outstanding volunteer service to the community. Other considerations for choosing a Citizen of the Year include:

 

• The Scope of the nominee’s impact;

• The Depth of the nominee’s impact;

• Obstacles which had to be overcome; and

• Demonstration of initiative, leadership, responsibility, dependability, and creativity.

 

Award winners receive the SAR Bronze Good Citizenship Medal and certificate. The chapter typically recognizes the Citizen of the Year at a ceremony in the fall. Additional information can be found in Volume III of the VASSAR Handbook.

 

 

 

Award Recipient

Dan and Leslie Jenuleson

 

Leslie Jenuleson accepts the award on behalf of the couple from Chairman Bill Price (left) and President Darrin Schmidt

Leslie Jenuleson accepts the award on behalf of the couple from Chairman Bill Price (left) and President Darrin Schmidt

Dan and Leslie Jenuleson manage full-time careers and serve in numerous volunteer capacities within the local community. We are proud to recognize them as the 2011 Fairfax Resolves Chapter Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) Citizen of the Year.

 

We were first introduced to Dan and Leslie in September 2010, when a member of our Chapter was asked to be present and sing at the ninth annual September 11th memorial ceremony organized by the Sully Station II Neighborhood Watch in Centreville, Virginia. The ceremony included a short prayer service, and the pastor of a local parish church blessed the emergency vehicles at Centreville Fire Station 38 and the Sully District Police Station. Over 100 residents attended the event, as did members of Fairfax Resolves SAR. The ceremony was featured on the front page of a subsequent edition of the Centreview Connection Newspaper.

 

Since this event was the ninth event put on by Dan and Leslie since 9/11/01, discussions soon began on how to best acknowledge the 10th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Those talks launched the effort that became this year’s 10th Annual Patriot Day celebration held at Westfield High School Stadium in Chantilly, led by the Sully Station II Neighborhood Watch and Fairfax Resolves SAR, featuring the Westfield High School Marching Band, and hosted by Gail Pennybacker of WJLA-TV. One of the speakers for this year’s event, Deputy Chief Charles Ryan, described the day as both a pleasant and refreshing “thank you.”

 

Through the planning, scheduling, and completion of our joint 9-11 event, we learned a great deal about the Sully Station II Neighborhood Watch, the Sully District Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC), and a lot about our 2011 Citizen of the Year. Dan and Leslie organized The Sully Station II Neighborhood Watch in 2000 at the request of their community. What began as a simple email distribution list making local crime reports more accessible to Fairfax County residents has since grown and been recognized for its unique success in organizing and educating local and surrounding areas to be alert to potential crimes in their neighborhoods. The program met and passed its most severe test on May 8, 2006, when a gunman opened fire on officers at the Sully District Station on Stonecroft Boulevard in Chantilly, Virginia. Three people were killed (two officers and the gunman), and three others were wounded. The Sully community was quite literally in a state of shock. A Candle Light Vigil for the first fallen officer, Vickie Armel, was held on May 10th, 2006. Dan and Leslie organized the event as a means to share a common grief and to show support to the Sully District Police Station. On May 18, 2006, they prepared and held a second vigil for Officer Mike Gabarino, who unfortunately succumbed to the injuries he received on May 8th. Over 1000 area residents, hundreds of police officers and their families, local dignitaries, and District Supervisor Michael Frey, attended both services. The second vigil, led by The Reverend Father Marcus Pollard of Saint Veronica Catholic Church, also included the Saint Veronica Adult Choir and bagpipes.

 

As can be seen, Dan and Leslie have led and mentored the Sully Station II Neighborhood Watch as it has grown through the years. Their program has been and continues to be a model program for all of Fairfax County.

 

In addition to the Neighborhood Watch, Dan and Leslie have been active members of the Sully District Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC) since 2003. Each of the eight police stations in Fairfax County has established a CAC, and its mission is to work toward the common goal of reducing crime and increasing the quality of life for those that reside or work in each District, as well as share information with all other police CAC’s throughout the County. The Sully District CAC has evolved into an organized forum for communication between police officers and the citizens that they have sworn to serve. Through its monthly meetings, the CAC has become the cornerstone of law enforcement outreach efforts into the Sully District. For the past eight years, the CAC has also provided holiday (Thanksgiving and Christmas) meals for district officers. Leslie has been Chair of the Sully District CAC for four years, and in the words of district assistant commander Lieutenant John Trace, the Sully District CAC is the “strongest attended and most smoothly run” in Fairfax County. He further cites Dan and Leslie as “instrumental” in the ongoing functions and support of their local CAC.

 

For the last three years, Leslie has been asked to represent the Sully District CAC and Fairfax County Police Department by speaking before the County Board of Supervisors during their annual budget hearings. Her testimony highlights initiatives for the coming year, and discourages cuts from budget line items vital to the Police Department and the community.

 

National Night Out is a national celebration of Police and public partnerships and is celebrated each year in the United States and Canada on the first Tuesday of August. It focuses on prevention of crime and drug activity. Since 2002, the Sully Station II National Night Out event has been one of the largest in Fairfax County and features block parties throughout the neighborhood, including themes, costumes, entertainment, a variety of foods, and an ice cream social. The leadership exhibited by Dan and Leslie for National Night Out, supplementing their activities in the Neighborhood Watch and CAC, makes it one that residents and public safety officials alike look forward to every year.

 

When asked to endorse our nomination, district Supervisor Michael Frey replied enthusiastically: “Dan and Leslie’s dedication to the community continues to amaze me. They truly have made the Sully District a better and safer place to live and work.” The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors recognized their commitment to improving the Fairfax community and awarded them the titles of Lord & Lady Fairfax in 2004. Their sustained volunteer services were again recognized in 2006 when they were named Citizens of the Year for Centreville.

 

In addition to their civic involvement, Dan and Leslie are active members of Saint Veronica Parish in Chantilly, Virginia. They both serve as ushers for weekend services and other liturgical holidays.

 

The Chapter Color Guard presents the Colors at the 10th annual Patriot Day

The Chapter Color Guard presents the Colors at the 10th annual Patriot Day

President Jack Sweeney and Guardsmen Darrin Schmidt (left) and Larry McKinley at the VASSAR Semi-Annual meeting in Winchester, Virginia.

Flags placed around the perimiter of the field honor the lives lost on September 11th. Each flag has the name of a responder, red ribbons represent fire and safety personnel while blue represents law enforcement.

 

 

 

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2017 Fairfax Resolves Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution