Piqua resident honored for volunteerism



DAYTON — Edna Stiefel of the Piqua area recently has been honored for her service to the community. Stiefel was the Platinum award winner in the Miami Valley Outstanding Senior Volunteers Award program on Sept. 26 at the Dayton Society of Natural History, sponsored by Medical Mutual of Ohio.

Stiefel and three other volunteers age 60 and older were honored for their service to charitable and nonprofit organizations. Other winners include Gold award winner Evelyn Alder of West Milton; Silver award winner Ellen Hazel; and Bronze award winner Pete Cutarelli of Greenville.

Stiefel was nominated by Gretchen Roeth, saying, “Edna Stiefel’s top priorities are her faith, her family and being a friend to the Piqua community. She has organized arts programming and neighborhood cleanups, raised money for scholarships and new playground equipment, and leads by example in everything she takes on.”

In her nomination letter, Roeth said staying active is the key to Edna’s longevity. She has made it her mission to reach out to fellow widows, get them involved in YWCA programs, take them on trips and to local concerts, helping create new friendships and a sense of belonging. While surveying residents as part of a community development block grant, Edna befriended an elderly man who could not afford to fix his roof and sidewalk, according to Roeth. Roeth said Stiefel was able to secure funds from the Housing Enhancement League of Piqua to help with repairs.

Stiefel is a founding member of Friends of the Piqua Parks, a committee dedicated to improving recreational areas. She helped create the Taste of the Arts festival, organizing programs, publicizing the event, getting there early to set up and staying until the last table has been folded. Edna is active in Mainstreet Piqua, the North Parks Neighborhood Association and the Chamber of Commerce. She loves recruiting volunteers for many other organizations and special events, according to Roeth’s nomination.

Roeth said friends describe Edna as “’the real thing’ when it comes to volunteering and making Piqua a wonderful place for everyone. No task is too large or too small for Edna, as she loves working with others toward a common goal.”