Gala to recognize honorees

STEUBENVILLE – Forty-nine women will be honored on April 21 by the Jefferson County Fourth Street Health Center at St. Florian Hall.

The 47 members of the Woman’s Club of Steubenville have been named the community honorees for 2013 by the health center’s board of directors.

Marge DeMark of Steubenville will be honored as the volunteer of the year, and Charlotte Jones will be honored at the gala as the medical honoree of 2013.

During the semi-formal dinner the gala committee will recognize the 2013 honorees as well as Young Ambassadors from area high schools.

Dr. Frank J. Petrola and Eileen Petrola are serving as co-chairs for the gala.

“Our goal this year will be to meet the standard set last year when the gala raised $100,000. The health center does so much good for so many people and we have plans for expanding our services in the future,” Frank Petrola added.

“We really need to support our community and the Jefferson County Fourth Street Health Center. There are so many people who are in need of medical help. We have so many people who are working but don’t have health insurance, so it is wonderful we have the health center here. People need us and we need to be there for them,” said Eileen Petrola.

“We feel it is a great honor to have been chosen as this year’s community honorees. We support the health center every year because it is so important to have this clinic available in the county,” stated Woman’s Club President Kathy Mills.

“It is a great honor to have this facility in our town. The Jefferson County Fourth Street Health Center provides a valuable service to the uninsured residents of our community,” Mills said.

“I started as a volunteer nurse when the health center first opened. And I am very pleased the Woman’s Club has been able to give financial support to the health center for three straight years. We plan to continue that support in the future and encourage other organizations to support the health center in any way they can,” noted Mills.

“It is such a joy to meet with the Woman’s Club of Steubenville every year. Their support is so fantastic and so welcomed,” health center Executive Director Ann Quillen said.

DeMark worked as a medical coder for 30 years at local hospitals before retiring and taking on similar work at the Jefferson County Fourth Street Health Center.

“This is actually an easier coding job. When I worked at the hospitals I was coding medical procedures that would ultimately be used for billing purposes. The health center is a free clinic so there is no billing. But I still type in the medical codes and I read all of the doctor and nurse practitioner notes,” explained DeMark.

“I come here every Monday and I enjoy volunteering here. It is an honor. I certainly didn’t expect to be named volunteer of the year. I enjoy coming here and doing what I do,” said DeMark.

“Coding work is enjoyable for me so I will come here as long as they need me,” she added.

“We now have coding students from Eastern Gateway Community College who come here to spend time with Marge. If we hired someone to do this coding work Marge does for us, it would be very expensive. This is a very educated position. For Marge to give us her time and talent week after week is so valuable,” cited Quillen.

“She helps us query the information. That is a valuable tool for us to properly file the patient information,” said Quillen.

“Ann is an angel, and the staffers here are all so nice. I enjoy my time here,” noted DeMark.

Everyone knows when Jones walks into the health center for her weekly volunteer time as a nurse practitioner.

“She is like a little medical leprechaun. Charlotte is so good at what she does and brings so much joy and enthusiasm, it is great,” said Quillen.

Last year Jones personally saw 491 of the 1,600 patients who visited the health center.

“I now work for Dr. Matthew Nardone so my time here is limited to four hours a week. I feel good that I have been able to help people. And the patients we see at the health center are so appreciative of this clinic. I am a helper and I love what I do here. Sometimes our patients have no other resources to go to, but they know the health center is available,” said Jones.

“The health center staff and other nurse practitioners are very well respected. And while I am honored to have been chosen as the medical honoree this year. It takes the whole team to run this place,” Jones said.

“I really enjoy the feeling of helping someone and taking away their pain. Each and every patient has their own personal story. If I can help someone, I am excited all day. This is my calling,” said Jones.

“Our annual gala is our major fundraiser and we are very fortunate to have such a dedicated committee. We start working on the gala in January and by early April we have a major event taking place,” added Quillen.

Quillen said reservations for the gala are being accepted at the Fourth Street Health Center or by calling (740) 283-2856.