Local Servant-Leaders Honored with 2022 Community Service Awards

The Chronicle, in partnership with sponsors Russell’s Funeral Home, Winston-Salem Transit Authority, City of Winston-Salem and Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, recently presented the 36th Annual Community Service Awards. During the virtual event, individuals, businesses, churches, and nonprofits were honored for their dedicated service in making a difference in our community.

“For the past 36 years, The Chronicle has shined a light on members of our community who have gone above and beyond to serve the people of Winston-Salem. The last two years have been difficult, meeting the needs of the population has not been easy, but our winners have never wavered. They have become innovative and nimble in these ever-changing times and still managed to help so many people,” said Bridget Elam, Managing Editor of Chronicle, when discussing this year’s winners.

“Although they may have important business titles and credentialed letters following their name, we all celebrate them today because they also carry another title with great responsibility and enormous weight; the title of servant of the community.

Top honors, Man and Woman of the Year, went to Sheriff Bobby Kimbrough and Dr. Pamela Alston-Oliver.

Sheriff Kimbrough has over 40 years of law enforcement experience and is the first black person to serve as Forsyth County Sheriff. Since taking office in 2018, Kimbrough has launched several programs aimed at addressing poverty, gun violence and other issues in our community. Kimbrough, who was born and raised here in Winston-Salem, said it’s been an honor and a privilege to give back to the community that has given her so much.

“I don’t consider myself the man of the year, I just consider myself a servant of this community,” Kimbrough said after accepting his award. “I say it all the time, the person I am is due to the community. I will never forget where I come from no matter where God takes me.

Dr. Alston-Oliver was born and raised in Rocky Mount, where she also fell in love with education. In 2001, she earned her MD with a focus on women’s reproductive health and racial disparities in health outcomes. Alston-Oliver is the first female physician and physician of color to lead the Novant Health Medical Group. Since moving to Winston-Salem, Alston-Oliver has participated in numerous community service and leadership programs. Alston-Oliver is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. and United Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church.

After accepting her Woman of the Year award and thanking The Chronicle, Alston-Oliver said she remains committed to addressing the health inequalities that plague our communities.

“Over the past few years, I have had the privilege of leading our medical group and our system to help us address the health inequities facing our communities and to be that voice at the table, a woman of color, in rooms where it matters, where representation matters, has truly been my privilege,” Alson-Oliver continued.

“And I am committed to improving the health of our communities by raising these issues, but also moving towards solutions. So I had the privilege of serving in this way. …I have three amazing children and a husband who I really want to make sure my legacy and the impression I leave on them is strong and for all the young girls in our community.

Here is a list of other winners:

*Youth Organization of the Year: Salvation Army Ken Carlson Boys and Girls Club

*Organization of the Year: Neighborhood’s Hands

*Curator of Arts: Gregg Penn

*Church of the Year: Union Baptist Church

*Award reserved for seniors: the AgingWell series from the Sticht Center for Healthy Aging and Alzheimer’s Prevention

*Carl H. Russell Lifetime Achievement Award: Joe “Peanut Man” Watson

*Paulette Lewis Moore Lifetime Achievement Award: Mütter D. Evans.

The 36th Annual Community Service Awards can be viewed by visiting The Chronicle’s official YouTube channel.

Norma P. Rex