By Wendy Osher
The Red Cross will honor Shannan Pyland this week as the 2012 Maui Red Cross Volunteer of the Year.
Pyland has been a volunteer with the Red Cross since 2009, holding several key positions on Maui and Lanai, where she served as a Disaster Action Team Captain.
Her experience includes opening Red Cross shelters during Hurricane Felicia, during past road closures affecting the Honoapiilani Highway, and for those affected by flooding conditions in South Maui.
She is being recognized as part of Red Cross Heroes Week taking place across the state.
Pyland has also helped by recruiting and setting up training sessions for residents, working to identify potential shelter locations and food resources, and connecting with local vendors to improve sheltering and feeding capabilities during times of disaster.
Pyland currently serves as a volunteer Red Cross Hotline Operator, receiving calls from first responders, and organizing the deployment of volunteers to the scene of disaster response operations.
She is also a Disaster Services instructor and Sheltering Lead volunteer for the County of Maui.
Red Cross officials say, “Shannan’s enthusiasm, coupled with her strong leadership ability during disaster responses, has helped the volunteer team in Maui County reach new levels of success.”
The Red Cross is a non-profit humanitarian organization which provides assistance to meet the immediate emergency needs of those affected by disasters.