It’s Your Business includes Norma Avery, Hanna Kemble Mick and Edward Cross

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Norma Averyof Topeka, elected by AARPThe 2023 AARP Kansas Andrews Award for Community Service, a nonprofit organization for people age 50 and older, is the association’s most prestigious and visible state volunteer community service award. AARP Kansas selected Avery for her outstanding service, which has greatly benefited her community, reflects AARP’s vision and mission, and inspired other volunteers. Avery in 2010 He founded the Topeka Juneteenth celebration that began in 2013 and continues to be involved with the annual event commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. Avery is a member of the AARP Kansas Diversity Council, based in Topeka Community Action, Inc. He serves on the board, is a foster grandparent, a member of the Greater Topeka Fellowship, and is active in his church, St. John Ame. . “This award serves as a symbol to the public that we can all work for positive social change,” said Glenda DuBois, AARP Kansas State Director. “AARP has long promoted the spirit of volunteerism and the important contributions volunteers make to their communities, neighbors and the programs they serve. As the 2023 Andrus Award winner in Kansas, Avery was asked to select a charity to receive a $2,500 donation from AARP in recognition of her honor. To Topeka’s family and friends in Topeka She chose the Juneteenth celebration.

Hannah Kemble MichCounselor at Indian Hills Elementary School, Auburn-Washburn Unified School District 437, was recently named the 2023-2024 School Counselor of the Year by the Kansas School Counselors Association. Kemble Meek has been a school counselor for eight years — five years now at Indian Hills Elementary School, two at Auburn Elementary and one year at New York Elementary in Lawrence. She is also the dean of Auburn-Washburn Elementary School Counselors and the Kansas State Department of Education Counseling Lead Coordinator. “This is a far greater honor than a personal achievement,” Kemble Meek said. “I recognize the collective dedication and hard work of all school counselors in the state of Kansas who tirelessly advocate for the safety and success of our students. I am proud to represent the many dedicated consultants in Kansas. I am well aware of the critical role that school counselors play in shaping the lives of students, and being selected for this prestigious title is inspiring and motivating. It confirms the importance of the work we do not only in our private schools, but in the context of the wider public education system. Kemble Meek earned a bachelor’s degree in advertising and a master’s degree in school counseling from Kansas State University.

Edward CrossPresident of the Kansas Independent Oil and Gas Association, as a 2023 Senior Lobbyist at the National Institute on Lobbying and Ethics. The Nile Top Lobbyist recognition is for federal lobbyists nominated for outstanding work in 2023 by their colleagues, congressional staff or clients. Cross was selected from over 500 nominations. According to Niles, the selection process was rigorous and competitive, and each candidate was blindly reviewed to ensure this honor was 100% merit-based, based on the following criteria: significant legislative achievement by 2023, innovation in their field or policy area by 2023, high esteem among clients and peers, and philanthropy. Or give back to their community through pro bono work. “It has been my honor to serve the oil and gas industry as an energy policy lobbyist for more than 20 years. The oil and gas industry improves life experiences and improves the quality of life for people around the world,” Cross said. “Lobbyists understand that advocacy is part of the democratic system. We act as the voices of others. Lobbying can help find real solutions.

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