2018-02-10 / Top News

Brodeur Is Volunteer of Year

By Jacob A. Ball


Leanne Brodeur receives the Volunteer of the Year award from Mayor Margaret Doud Sunday, February 4, during the Mackinac Island Winter Festival. (Photograph provided by Mary Patay) Leanne Brodeur receives the Volunteer of the Year award from Mayor Margaret Doud Sunday, February 4, during the Mackinac Island Winter Festival. (Photograph provided by Mary Patay) Leanne Brodeur was named Volunteer of the Year by Mayor Margaret Doud Sunday, February 4, during the Mackinac Island Winter Festival. Each year the city’s Recreation Board selects one resident to be honored for contributions made to the community in support of a healthy and active lifestyle. Ms. Brodeur said she was completely taken by surprise to receive the award, and that it had never even occurred to her that she was a candidate. She previously served as recreation director and was part of the decision-making process for the award in past years.

She is entering her 20th year as leader of the Mackinac Island 4-H club, and was instrumental in the return of the club’s activities to the Mackinac Community Equestrian Center last summer. She donates her time to provide riding lessons and organizes special guests to teach the children. Plans are to increase the number of lessons and events this summer.

“Not all the kids will continue on with horses as a lifelong passion, but through exposure to it, it builds lifelong assets,” she said.

The lessons she believes are taught through working with horses are self-confidence, handeye coordination, respect for animals, and time management.

“There’s a relationship [with horses] that is pretty special,” she said.

She has also been an active member of Mackinac Island Recreational Development for more than 25 years. She has assisted in organizing the Winter Festival, and the Seasons of Mackinac calendar photograph contest. Ms. Brodeur also draws the turtle for the Winter Festival button each year. Every winter, the turtle participates in another wintertime activity. This year, the mascot is playing broom hockey, a popular youth activity at the festival, which she was surprised had never been used before in more than four decades of buttons for the festival.

Ms. Brodeur also volunteers for Ste. Anne’s Catholic Church as part of the Meals on Snowmobiles, and helps run summer activities at the church. She said the meal delivery service is something she has always enjoyed being a part of, and she does not think of it as volunteering.

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