Pictured from left to right: Melody Powers, National Defense Chairman for Alafia River Chapter NSDAR; Deputy Caitlin LaVigne; Corporal Brian LaVigne; and Roberta Jordan, Regent, Alafia River Chapter NSDAR.

Outstanding Community Members Honored By Local DAR

On May 2, the Alafia River Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) presented awards to three outstanding community members.

B. Lee Elam received the Community Service Award for his volunteer work in the community. As an attorney in Brandon, he supported local service groups and donated his time and legal advice to the community and migrant groups. Elam was nominated by the Community Service Award Chairman, Glenda Thurow, who presented his award. His wife Pat pinned his medal on him.

John Noriega was unable to attend but was also recognized with a Community Service Award for the support he and his family have given to Brandon through their business, Bill’s Pharmacy.

Corporal Brian LaVigne of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office was awarded the Distinguished Citizen Medal which recognizes a first responder or military member who achieves the qualities of honor, service, courage, leadership and patriotism. In addition to numerous commendations, including a Medal of Valor, MADD Law Enforcement Officer of the Year and two life-saving awards, Cpl. LaVigne volunteered as a youth soccer coach and currently volunteers at Gracie Fishhawk teaching self-defense. He is also a self-taught, certified Spanish translator.

He was nominated by the Alafia River Chapter NSDAR Regent Roberta Jordan (Lt. Col., US Army, Retired) and his citation was read by National Defense Chairman Melody Powers and Cpl. LaVigne’s daughter, Deputy Caitlin LaVigne, placed the medal.

For more information about the Alafia River Chapter NSDAR, email ARCRegistrar201921@gmail.com.

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Michelle has been with the Osprey Observer for almost nine years, and her current position is Assignment Editor. She resides in Bloomingdale with her husband Phil, two sons, Philip and Matthew, and Tigger the cat.