Bertie tops national rankings

Published 11:46 am Saturday, November 28, 2009

AULANDER — Number one.

Relay for Life Bertie County has been recognized by the American Cancer Society (ACS) as number one in the nation for the 15,000-19,999 population category.

The announcement was made last week by Kelly Cross, ACS Community Manager for the South Atlantic Division, at Relay for Life Bertie County’s Annual Celebration and 2010 Kick Off held at the Aulander Community Building.

Cross said the event raised a total of $195,225 with $10.33 per capita. The event was chaired by JoAnn Jordan, Glenwood Mitchell and Bobbie Parker.

“We are very proud of the Relay for Life volunteers in Bertie County,” she said. “Everyone works hard to make this event successful. Achieving a high national ranking like this one is proof that their work is being recognized and that this community is dedicated to the fight against cancer.”

In addition to Relay for Life Bertie County being ranked number one nationally, the Perdue Farms Team ranked among the top 10 fundraising teams in the nation.

The Perdue Farms Team, led by Tricia Drew, raised $73,802 through fundraisers, corporate sponsorship and Perdue associates payroll deduction. The team was ranked number nine in the nation.

“The funds raised through Relay for Life events enable us to continue our investment in the fight against cancer through research, education, advocacy and patient services,” said Cross. “Thanks to the generosity of our volunteers and donors, the money raised by Relay for Life participants goes directly to the American Cancer Society’s lifesaving programs.”

The 2010 Kick Off Celebration signified the changing of leadership for the event as Parker and Jordan stepped down from their positions on the committee. Debbie Howard and Linda McNair-Moore will fill those vacant Chair positions.

Before her departure, Parker was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing her work with the ACS long before a Relay event was organized for the county as well as her work with the event.

Parker said that though her duties on the committee were over her commitment to Relay’s cause would continue.

“It’s a passion, something that doesn’t go away,” she said. “As long as cancer is out there, I’ll be out there.”

Jordan also had her parting words.

“The goal is what we celebrate tonight, more birthdays,” she said. “Relay is everyday.”

The event, entering its 17th year, will see a change of venue going from Aulander to Windsor at the Bertie County Recreation Complex.

The goal for the 2010 Relay for Life Bertie County is set at $200,000. More survivor participation, corporate teams, school involvement is encouraged. Relay for Life Bertie County is scheduled for May 14-15, 2010.

Early Bird registration ends December 31, 2009. To register a team contact Howard at (252) 332-9056 or Moore at (252) 903-7660.