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2018 Jefferson Award Recipients

Lucas Boyd, Jefferson Award Winner

Lucas Boyd

Associate fraud analyst, Highmark Health

Lucas Boyd was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as a triplet with his identical brothers, Gabriel and Samuel. Together, they provide emergency preparedness classes through their business, Before It's Too Late LLC. The brothers have trained over 500 people in first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and the use of automated external defibrillator (AED), donating a portion of each class' proceeds to The American Red Cross.

They have provided instruction for churches for free and have teamed up with the Miracle League of South Hills to provide training to their staff for the summer baseball season. They continue to educate and encourage the community, businesses, and students to learn lifesaving skills. More information on their business can be found at www.B42Ltraining.com.

Weatta Frazier Collins, Jefferson Award Winner

Weatta Frazier Collins

Provider account liaison, Highmark Inc.

Weatta Frazier Collins was born in Pennsylvania to Joseph and Florence Frazier. She attended Germantown Academy and received her high school diploma from Plymouth Whitemarsh High School. She earned her associate degree in fashion merchandising from the Art Institute of Philadelphia.

Collins has worked in the health insurance industry for over 30 years and is the founder of "The Legacy Exists," a non-profit scholarship fund awarded to at-risk youth, which honors her father's legacy of humanitarianism. The scholarship is awarded to recipients for educational, recreational, and social programs with the goal of assisting in the development of well-rounded youth who are making a positive impact on society.

Collins is married to Gary T. Collins and has three children. She resides in Maple Glen, north of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Hector Gonzalez, Jefferson Award Winner

Hector Gonzalez

Territory director, Visionworks

Hector Gonzalez has been helping the homeless for the last 30 years, beginning by feeding 10 to 15 people twice a week with a dream to one day feed larger groups.

Gonzalez' dream was finally made possible through the Jefferson Awards in 2009. After being awarded $500, Gonzalez started a ministry within his church. His efforts began with 300 sandwiches, which were handed out by close friends and family from church, who all became inspired and began to donate additional time and money.

Gonzalez' ministry grew and attracted many others from the church, as well as outside. The efforts grew into Hope for the Homeless, which is now a non-profit organization that feeds, provides clothing, and offers guidance and spiritual help to the homeless.

Through Hope for the Homeless, over 3,000 blankets were provided around Miami in response to a record setting cold winter and over 40 people have been able to get off the streets.

Myla Granadino, Jefferson Award Winner

Myla Granadino

Strategy consultant and analyst, Highmark Inc.

Myla Granadino always believed in her heart that her profound calling is to serve others. She counts not how much she gives, but how much love she puts into giving and serving, and how much joy she leaves behind to the lives she touches. For the past 22 years, Granadino has dedicated her personal time and provided hands-on assistance to lead several efforts including Feeding Program, Gift Giving, Disaster Relief, and Share-a-Joy projects in the Philippines. In 2013 and 2017, she spearheaded a fundraising effort called "Music and Feast for a Cause" to benefit typhoon victims in the Philippines and Pennsylvania Women Work (PAWW), raising more than $9000 with the help of family and friends. She holds a dream to establish a non-profit organization to empower and support the literacy and educational needs of the indigenous children in her hometown in the Philippines.

Granadino also chooses to bloom where she is planted. For the past 16 years, she has volunteered for numerous community events in Pittsburgh, such as United Way campaigns, the Soaringwords' Quilt Decorations, Pittsburgh International Children's Festival, 412 Food Rescue, PAWW Circle of Hope Gala, Jefferson Awards Foundation Gala, and Highmark Walk for a Healthy Community.

Additionally, for the past six years, Granadino has passionately championed Pennsylvania Women Work. She is a member of the organization's Corporate Advisory Committee and is a mentor in their 3 Cups of Coffee® program.

Antoinette Hill, Jefferson Award Winner

Antoinette Hill

Clinical quality management analyst, Highmark Inc.

Toni Hill is a registered nurse and a clinical quality management analyst at Highmark Inc in Northeastern Pennsylvania (NEPA). She practiced in intensive care unit, emergency room, home health and office nursing before "finding her niche" at Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania, now Highmark Inc. in NEPA, almost 19 years ago.

Hill began volunteering with Operation Honduras in October 1998. On the day she was leaving for her first trip, Hurricane Mitch had hit and devastated Honduras. Seeing the poverty there was overwhelming for Hill. "Average income in the area is $30 per month. I couldn't believe that people who had nothing to begin with, could lose everything. Since then, it has held a special place in my heart."

Operation Honduras includes several aspects of aid including oral surgery, construction of schools or churches, Gift of Hearing sponsored by Starkey Foundation, and Gift of Sight sponsored by Essilor Vision Foundation and Capri Optics.

Hill was born and raised in Scranton, Pennsylvania and now lives in the Pocono Mountains in Cresco, Pennsylvania. She is married to Rick Hill, and has two sons, two stepsons, one stepdaughter, and three grandsons.

Jason Holman, Jefferson Award Winner

Jason Holman

Optician, Visionworks

Jason Holman was born and raised in Orlando, Florida. He graduated from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor of science in molecular biology and microbiology, and works as an optician at Visionworks. He first started working with the homeless in 2009 and has worked at Health Care Center for the Homeless since 2011.

Holman is a Christian and is very involved with his church, City Beautiful Church, where his passion for mission work and serving others was awakened. He's participated in mission work in India, Peru, Bolivia, and Haiti on 11 different trips. Since 2015, Holman has been a mentor with Central Care Mission, a men's residential program for drug and alcohol rehabilitation, and has also been a volunteer with middle school and high school kids at The Human Experience since 2016.

Dr. Michelle Cadet Honore, Jefferson Award Winner

Dr. Michelle Cadet Honore

Optometrist, Visionworks

Michelle Cadet Honore was born and raised in Port-au-Prince, Haiti before moving to the United States with her family at the age of twelve. Honore had always been interested in medicine and became more so in optometry when her grandmother became blind.

In 2014, Honore started participating in yearly optometric mission trips to Haiti. In January 2018, her and fellow missioners examined over 1,000 students in three days, and dispensed glasses in Port-au-Prince primary schools.

Honore feels that she is extremely fortunate to be able to give back to her community and plans to do so for many more years. She would like to thank her general manager, Christopher Wolcott, for her Jefferson Award nomination.

Cheri McCollum, Jefferson Award Winner

Cheri McCollum

Sr. customer service representative, Highmark West Virginia Inc.

Cheri McCollum is a volunteer emergency medical technician with her local fire department, responding to 911 calls and involved with grant writing, reporting, fundraising, and attending parades. McCollum's township is located approximately twenty minutes from the closest paid emergency medical services crew. By responding as volunteers, her squad can reduce the response time of emergency calls to about ten minutes.

One of McCollum's proudest moments was when her friend posted on Facebook declaring her as one of the people who had saved her life. "Knowing a little girl gets to grow up with her mom because I was there is an amazing thing."

Jenny Sabol, Jefferson Award Winner

Jenny Sabol

Project consultant, Highmark Inc.

Jenny Sabol is most passionate about her work with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Pittsburgh, whose mission is to "provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change lives for the better, forever." Since 2013, Sabol has volunteered as a Big Sister and is currently a Big Sister to two Little Sisters in both the Community Based Program and Mentor 2.0 Program. She also serves as co-chair for their Big Recruitment Board.

Sabol is active on the board of directors for the Western Pennsylvania Health Information and Management Systems Society as well as GetInvolved! Inc. She is also enthusiastic about health and wellness and works part-time as a fitness instructor and personal trainer.

Dave Seaman, Jefferson Award Winner

Dave Seaman

IT infrastructure analyst, HM Health Solutions

Dave Seaman is the executive director of The Partnership for Hope, a non-profit organization in central Pennsylvania that provides care for homeless families, mentors ex-offenders, assists single parents, and provides basic needs to struggling people.

Seaman began The Partnership in 2010, mobilizing teams of people in need-targeted community service and fostering collaboration in the non-profit and faith community. After successfully founding The Partnership for Hope, he returned to the Highmark Health enterprise in the fall of 2017 in the contact center solutions team at HM Health Solutions.

Seaman has been married to his wife, Heather, for nearly 25 years. They reside in Dauphin, Pennsylvania with their daughters, Caeley and Faith.

Latha Thomas, Jefferson Award Winner

Latha Thomas

Sr analytic data analyst, Highmark Health

Latha Thomas is incredibly passionate about giving back to her community and strongly feels that it is an important part of her being and what brings her the most joy.

Thomas volunteers at New Hope Ministries, a Christian social service agency whose mission is to support efforts toward stability for neighbors in times of need. In addition to volunteering, Thomas produces vegetables in her backyard for New Hope's pantry, donating 62 pounds of vegetables in 2017.

Thomas is also a volunteer at Compassionate Care Hospice in Camp Hill, which serves several counties in Central Pennsylvania, where she helps to put together inpatient packages and is responsible for the packages across all counties.

Additionally, Thomas serves as a rape counselor and advocate at YWCA of Carlisle, Pennsylvania. She provides crisis hotline services to survivors of sexual assault and their significant others, including immediate and ongoing supportive counseling, accompaniment services to area hospitals, and advocating through agencies or systems such as police, hospital, or court.

Thomas also attends a variety of seminars and community events and activities. She is a lifelong patron of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

Gina Wynn, Jefferson Award Winner

Gina Wynn

Digital copywriter, Highmark Health

Gina Wynn, of North Royalton, Ohio, built a life around volunteerism. During the day, she works as digital copywriter for Highmark Health. Outside of work, Wynn is immediate past president of CISV Pittsburgh, an international peace education organization for young people.

Formerly a volunteer English teacher for the Peace Corps in Russia, she has always been passionate about helping others. Her husband and two teenage children share that passion. She is married to Carnegie Mellon University English professor, James Wynn, PhD, who also served in the Peace Corps. Their children volunteer in their free time as well.

See all 2018 Press Releases

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