Edgewater Resident Pat Boarman Earns Top Honor in President’s Volunteer Service Award
Pat Boarman, of Edgewater, was honored earlier this month when she was awarded the President’s “Call to Service” Volunteer Service Award. This is the highest level award for volunteer service in the country issued by the office of the President. Recipients must have a minimum of 4,000 volunteer service hours over a lifetime.
Boarman was nominated for her work by the Annapolis Elks Lodge’s Mark Walp, who, as exalted ruler, is the current leader of the organization. Walp surprised her with the award at a recent Annapolis Elks Lodge meeting.
Boarman is awfully deserving of the accolades. Not only is she a past exalted ruler of the Annapolis Elks, a community service organization on Pythias Drive in Edgewater, but she’s served the South County community for decades as a local leader.
Let’s talk first about Pat and her involvement with the Elks. Their group not only gives scholarships to local students, but they also help senior citizens and veterans. Each year they host Boy Scout groups who come from across the country to visit the U.S. Naval Academy. The local lodge feeds hundreds and puts them up at Elks’ Camp Barrett in Crownsville. They also host camps for children with disabilities and medical issues and for wounded warriors with their children and families.
Boarman has not only been a leader of the group, but a hands-on volunteer for their many community service projects and ideals.
But the Elks are just a sliver of her involvement. Boarman’s daughter Mary said that she’s “bent over backwards for the people of South County.”
Mary said that the family first come to the area by way of Mason’s Beach in Deale in the 1970s. There, Pat immediately got involved. She was known as Pat O’Brien then, before she was widowed and remarried.
Pat went to a community picnic, made a few suggestions and was subsequently elected president of the Mason’s Beach Citizen’s Association, a position she held for many years.
She later founded the Association of Property Owners of South County, which at one point had 1100 members. That group worked tirelessly, with Pat as president, to get the funding for the new jetty on Rockhold Creek in Deale.
“It took 12 years for that [jetty] project to get completed,” Pat said.
In addition, her group worked to curtail growth so that Southern Anne Arundel County could retain its rural character. Pat was a regular on the ballot for local office. She was such a fixture at County Council meetings, fighting to protect land from overdevelopment, that former County Executive O. James Lighthizer proclaimed Jan. 21 “Pat O’Brien Day.”
After her husband passed away, Pat moved to Selby and then to Londontowne. She’s continued her involvement. She has been the president and served on the board of directors of the Southern District Police Community Relations Board for nearly two decades. When she left the board they gave her a big sendoff, even picking her up in a limousine, she said.
Mary said that her mom has been a stalwart fighter for South County. “She was always there. She made sure she had her facts straight, but she was always willing to stand up and ask the tough questions.”
Before Pat came to South County, she worked in DC as a hostess and then later went to work for C&P Telephone company, where she became a manager.
Anthony Anzalone, who heads the scholarship committee at the Elks, and whom Pat nominated for “Elk of the Year” said that Pat is very deserving of the presidential award for service.
“Pat is phenomenal,” he said.
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