CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars® announces that local volunteer Cynthia (Cindi) Neary had been selected by Scholarship America® as the 2015 Ralph "Cy" Seifert National Volunteer of the Year.

The Volunteer of the Year award honors and recognizes individual Dollars for Scholars affiliate volunteers who are instrumental in successfully guiding the course of Dollars for Scholars, a program of Scholarship America, in a significant and beneficial way. Cindi's nomination was reviewed and selected by members of our national Dollars for Scholars Leadership Council. This diverse group of current and former Dollars for Scholars leaders had the inspiring but difficult task of reading and selecting our national award winners. While the Council was very impressed with all nominees, it was clear that Cindi's leadership, dedication and service were second to none. Her revitalization of CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars, and her undaunted spirit to do "whatever it takes," inspired us all. It's clear that Cindi's work has created life-changing opportunities for students in your community, and her achievements are an inspiration for other volunteers across the country as well.

"Cindi Neary thoroughly believes in people and in the mission of CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars and applies all her boundless, indefatigable energy and hard work to making CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars responsive to the needs of Westfield students seeking undergraduate higher education.   She has been on the CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars Board for ten years as a member, vice-president and president since 2009.  Since joining she has reinvigorated the board with her enthusiasm, countless hours of work, new ideas and most of all her belief in bringing a human voice and personal approach to the organization that is CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars. In the process she added board members, increased awareness of the regional and national organization, helped donors, students, volunteers, and board members connect on a personal level, brought to the Westfield Community a greater awareness of CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars, and increased overall donations and endowment funds dramatically in her ten years on the board.

The most surprising thing is that Cindy has done (and continues to do) all these things despite being legally blind.  That she has to use all kinds of compensating strategies for her extremely limited vision to accomplish her work only makes those achievements more astounding!  "  -From nomination submitted to Scholarship America

"On behalf of Scholarship America, I would like to thank Cindi for her tremendous work that changes the lives of students in her community," said Bob Ballard, President & CEO, Scholarship America. "Dollars for Scholars is the program it is today because of volunteers like Cindi, who are passionate about helping students achieve their dreams. The recognition of her unwavering commitment will inspire other volunteers to emulate CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars successes. Everyone involved with CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars, as well as the community as a whole, should be incredibly proud of her achievements"

As the National Volunteer of the Year, Cynthia will receive a $3,000 monetary award for CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars, and will be recognized nationally for her contributions.

Kit Milligan a long time volunteer and former Vice-President of CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars board said "This  National Volunteer of the Year Award rightfully recognizes Cindi's tremendous dedication to the success of CSF Westfield Dollars for Scholars chapter. The award shines light not only on Cindi's accomplishments but also on the community as a whole. On behalf of the Board of Directors and the community, I offer Cindi our enthusiastic and sincere congratulations. "