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Volunteering. It’s what keeps Trudy Patterson, 77, going. She’s not much for the publicity that sometimes goes along with all that she does, but she graciously acknowledged recently receiving the President’s “Lead with Experience” award, signed by Barack Obama. It was presented to her for her work with the Wellington Senior Center and the Volunteers of America Senior Nutrition Program which she has served since 2004. Over time she has chalked up more than 9,000 volunteer hours. Evidence, in the form of a series of plaques, is displayed on the wall at the Wellington Senior Center.
Patterson is passionate about her work with seniors, but her volunteer efforts include much more. She has served Crossroads Safehouse in Fort Collins, made 150 lap robes for the Police Department’s Christmas Elves program, worked with the Marine Corps Auxiliary to provide items for the Veterans’ hospital in Cheyenne, and is heavily involved with the Wellington Relay for Life fundraiser for cancer research.
Patterson and her husband visited Wellington several times before they moved to town from Spokane, Washington. “For a long time I said I’d never live in such a small town. Now you couldn’t get me out of here,” Patterson says.