A Clendenin woman will receive an award for the work she did after last summer’s devastating floods.
Susan M. Jack of Clendenin will receive the 2017 Phoenix Award for Outstanding Contributions to Disaster Recovery by a Volunteer.
Jack’s plans to leave Clendenin and move to Ohio with her teenage daughter Jodi were upended by torrential rain on June 23, 2016, resulting in one of the worst floods in West Virginia’s history. Clendenin suffered 23 fatalities, widespread infrastructure loss and destruction of its business center.
Despite losing all her personal belongings, Jack decided to stay and help Clendenin recover. Armed with a construction background, she worked dusk to dawn clearing debris and mud out of the damaged homes. Jack also inspected property damage, provided timelines for rebuilding many properties and even served as a construction foreman.
She delivered donated cash and gift cards to those in need, and developed a solid volunteer team attuned to the needs of local flood victims, arranging with local churches to house and cook meals for volunteers.
Ten months after the June floods, Jack continues her volunteer recovery work. She bought a flooded-out home in Clendenin to encourage others to stay and rebuild.
A South Carolina mayor, a Texas business owner, and a Northern California public official leading the relief efforts for a fire-ravaged county were also named winners of the 2017 Phoenix Award by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The awards will be presented by SBA Administrator Linda McMahon on April 30, during the National Small Business Week kickoff event at the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C.
Since 1998, the SBA has presented Phoenix Awards to business owners, public officials and volunteers who displayed selflessness, ingenuity and tenacity in the aftermath of a disaster, while contributing to the rebuilding of their communities.
Each year since 1963, the president has issued a proclamation calling for the celebration of National Small Business Week. This year National Small Business Week will be recognized April 30 – May 6, with events planned in Washington, D.C., New York City, Indianapolis, Dallas and Fresno, California. For more information on the national events, visit www.sba.gov/nsbw.