Triangle, VA (15 June 2021) – The Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program and the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation’s primary goal is, through the gift of a new toy, to help bring the joy of Christmas and send a message of hope to America’s less fortunate children. The mission of collecting and distributing new, unwrapped toys to our Nation’s most precious resource – its children – is carried out by tens of thousands of Marines, sailors, and volunteers across this great Country. By doing so, we provide that beacon of hope to millions of children. We have accomplished this mission for 73 consecutive years.
Each year, at the conclusion of the annual Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots campaign, the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation selects its Regional and National Campaigns & Coordinators of the Year. The winners are selected based on several specific criteria. Most importantly, executing a local campaign that epitomizes the highest honor and traditions of the United States Marine Corps that assists as many less fortunate children as possible in their local community.
Last year, despite the challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Marines, sailors, and volunteers in 808 communities across our Nation, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands, assisted over 7.4 million children with 20.2 million toys, books, and games. Out of those 808 local campaigns, twelve (12) were selected as Regional Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year and two (2) were selected as National Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year. The following is a list of these outstanding fourteen (14) Campaigns:
Marine Corps Unit Regional Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year
- Region 1: Staff Sergeant Justin Bulac; Frederick, MD – Company B, 4th Light Armored Battalion
- Region 2: Staff Sergeant Elliot Shaffer; Greensboro, NC – Communications Company, Combat Logistics Regiment 45
- Region 3: Staff Sergeant Thomas Fretwell; West Palm Beach, FL – 4th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company (ANGLICO)
- Region 4: Gunnery Sergeant Jacob McCommack; Kansas City, MO Combat Logistics Regiment 4
- Region 5: Gunnery Sergeant Robert Soden; Wichita, KS, Electronic Maintenance Company (ELMACO), 4th Maintenance Battalion
- Region 6: Staff Sergeant Winston Bannett; Spokane, WA – Battery P, 5th Battalion, 14th Marines
Local Community Organization Civilian Volunteer Regional Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year
- Region 1: Dawn Stem; Edgewater, MD
- Region 2: Janel Doyle; Bowling Green, KY
- Region 3: Wendy Chadwell; Warner Robins, GA
- Region 4: Edward Lopez; Holland, MI
- Region 5: Linda Davis; Aubrey TX
- Region 6: Mary Butler; Everett, WA
Marine Corps Unit National Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year
- Gunnery Sergeant Alexander Baye; Indianapolis, IN – Communications Company, 14th Marines
Local Community Organization Civilian Volunteer National Coordinators / Campaigns of the Year
- David “Wally” Waller; Lakeland, FL
These exceptional Marines and volunteers will be recognized at a Local Coordinator Dinner held in conjunction with the Foundation’s Annual Coordinator Training on Friday, 17 September 2021. The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation congratulates each of these individuals and all the Marines and volunteers that made their selection possible.
The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, is an IRS recognized 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public charity which was created at the behest of the United States Marine Corps. The Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program began in 1947 in Los Angeles, and since it first National Campaign in 1948 has distributed more than 604 million toys to 272 million children.