Outreach – Center for Community Resources to Host the 2023 Mighty Oak Awards

Members News

As Outreach – Center for Community Resources celebrates 35 years, Outreach invites the community to join in the celebration at the 2023 Mighty Oak Awards on October 5, 2023, from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM at the Glenmaura National Golf Club in Moosic, PA. This year’s Mighty Oak Awardee is Dr. Ruth A. Connolly, and Kate Holod and Bill Burnell will be honored with the Beth Beh Community Spirit Award.

The Mighty Oak Awards honor those in Northeastern Pennsylvania who are pillars for their leadership and contributions to the community.

The 2023 Mighty Oak honoree is Dr. Ruth A. Connolly, former Development Director of Outreach. Dr. Connolly has spent over 50 years serving the community through her early childhood, middle school, and high school education work. She served as Outreach, then known as the Economic Opportunity Training Center of NEPA, as the Development Director, where she was instrumental in fundraising for the renovation of the Seventh Avenue Center. Outreach is still located at the Seventh Avenue Center today in Scranton. Most recently, she is the Director of the North Pocono Dry Good Pantry.

The Beth Beh Community Spirit Honorees for 2023 are:

Ms. Kate Holod is a member of the Outreach Board and Fundraising Committee. Ms. Holod has served as an Outreach Board member since 2006. Before retiring, she worked 35 years in state government, including 15 years as Director of the Bureau of Child Care with the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. She is very active in the community. She recently was named President of the Board of the Kiwanis Club of Scranton and actively volunteers at many of the Kiwanis’ local initiatives.

Mr. Bill Burnell is a longtime volunteer GED instructor for Outreach. Prior to retiring, he worked in commercial insurance for over 50 years and owned his own agency for nearly 20. Since retiring, he has become a very active volunteer in the community. For over 35 years, he has been a member of the Arc of NEPA Board and is the current Board President. He has a great love of the American Civil War era and actively participates in the Civil War Roundtable as a hobby.

In 2022, Outreach began awarding the Beth Beh Community Spirit Award. This award recognizes and honors an individual or group with a long-standing devotion to community service through education, volunteer work, and citizen connections. Beth Beh was the original founder of the Women’s Employment Program (WEP) in 1986, the flagship program of the Employment Opportunity Training Center (EOTC), now Outreach. She devoted her life to developing and expanding community services that focused on single mothers and children in the region and provided mentorship to childcare professionals.

The Mighty Oak Awards will include cocktails, hor d’oeuvres, live music, and basket raffles. Participant stories will set the stage for the awards event. Individual tickets can be purchased by visiting the Outreach website at outreachworks.org.

Outreach Center for Community Resources delivers family educational and workforce development services and programs to the regional community to promote family stability and economic self-sufficiency. Outreach provides evidence-based early childhood programs that help families and children gain the skills to be healthy and productive community members. Outreach programs support families experiencing adverse life events, including economically disadvantaged families, individuals seeking services that are involved in the Women’s and Veterans Treatment Court System, residents at the Lackawanna County Prison, and justice-involved juveniles. Outreach improves the lives of over 4,500 adults and children annually with evidence-based family development, early childhood education, adult GED services, and workforce programs that support them as they navigate life’s challenges.