Kiwanis awards Wiggins with Zeller Fellowship - Citizentribune

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The Alcoa Kiwanis Club has awarded Kelly Wiggins a Walter Zeller Fellowship in recognition of her leadership as executive director of The Gate — Gateway to Independence, a local nonprofit service agency.

The Gate provides social activities, pre-vocational training and service opportunities for young adults with disabilities. The 52 young adults of The Gate meet actively three days a week from August through May.

Wiggins became executive director in June of 2015. Under her leadership, the number of participants has increased to full capacity in numbers and activities.

“She has proven energetic, kind and helpful to everyone involved in The Gate’s programs,” a press release from the Alcoa Kiwanis Club states.

A graduate of Leadership Blount, “she has improved The Gate’s social networking presence in the community and has updated The Gate’s technical record keeping, such as recording payroll and budget data,” the release states.

Wiggins also has facilitated an Aktion Club, a Kiwanis-supported youth leadership and service club for The Gate’s participants. The Gate has completed a myriad of service and fundraising projects, including Mission of Hope Blue Barrel donations and stuffing backpacks for Haven House residents.

Walter Zeller Committee Chair Jim Warner, who presented the award, said, “The Walter Zeller Fellowship represents a significant donation to the Kiwanis Children’s fund. A major focus of the Kiwanis Children’s Fund has been the elimination of maternal and neonatal tetanus (MNT) in underdeveloped countries. A $1,250 donation to the Kiwanis Children’s Fund by Alcoa Kiwanis earns one fellowship and purchases sufficient vaccine to protect more than 690 women and their future babies from the scourge of tetanus infection from unsanitary birthing conditions in underdeveloped countries.”

Also, in recognition of worthiness and assistance from The Gate, the Alcoa Kiwanis Club presented to Kelly Wiggins checks for roughly $3,000 — the entire proceeds from Alcoa Kiwanis Antique Appraisal Fair and Bake Sale events.

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