State Rep. honored as National Service Advocate of the Year in Washington, D.C.

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NH State Rep. Matt Wilhelm, D-Manchester, was recipient of the 2020 Stoneman Brown National Service Advocate of the Year Award during a Feb. 11 ceremony in Washington, D.C. Courtesy Photo

Washington, DC – In recognition of his strong support for national service, New Hampshire State Representative Matt Wilhelm of Manchester received the 2020 Stoneman Brown National Service Advocate of the Year Award from Voices for National Service, a coalition working to ensure Americans of all ages can serve and volunteer in their community.

Wilhelm was honored for exemplary determination, creativity, and results in building support for national service among our nation’s leaders. It was formally presented to him at the 17th Annual Friends of National Service Awards in Washington, DC, on February 11, 2020.

“Representative Wilhelm is a vocal advocate for placing citizens at the center of solving challenges in their communities,” said AnnMaura Connolly, President of Voices for National Service.  “In 2005, he joined AmeriCorps and served with City Year New Hampshire, a position that he credits with launching his career in public service. Representative Wilhelm has turned his AmeriCorps service into a lifetime commitment making him the clear choice for our Advocate of the Year Award.”

Drawing on his experience as an AmeriCorps member, Representative Wilhelm teamed up with other national service alumni to engage presidential candidates in the 2008, 2016, and 2020 primary cycles, encouraging them to strengthen and expand AmeriCorps. Since being elected to the State House in 2018, Representative Wilhelm has championed legislation aimed at leveraging national service to attract and retain young talent in New Hampshire.

“Every day across New Hampshire, AmeriCorps members make our communities safer, stronger, healthier, and improve the lives of our state’s most vulnerable citizens. As an AmeriCorps alumnus and now as a state service commissioner with Volunteer NH, I can attest to the power of service to transform our community and develop leaders,” said Representative Wilhelm. “AmeriCorps gave me a clear sense of direction. It connected me more deeply to my community, our nation, and the world and set me on a lifelong journey of service. Having witnessed the power of national service, it has been a top policy priority as a state representative. These service-driven, community-minded young people are an untapped talent pool, and given our state’s workforce challenges, we should be doing more to attract and retain AmeriCorps alumni for college and career in the Granite State.”

Representative Wilhelm serves as chair of New Hampshire’s Service Year Workforce Commission, which was established following the unanimous passage of HB570 before being signed into law by Governor Chris Sununu last summer. The Service Year Workforce Commission will tour the state this spring, beginning on Monday, March 2nd with a hearing focused on higher education and national service at Dartmouth College in Hanover.

 Representative Wilhelm joined a bipartisan group of distinguished leaders in government, business and journalism from across the nation who were honored, including Representatives Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Glenn Thompson (R-PA) and Donna Shalala (D-FL), Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO), Chris Coons (D-DE) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Arizona State Representative Aaron Lieberman and CNN’s Fareed Zakaria. The full list of 2020 award winners is available here.

The Friends of National Service Awards was sponsored by Comcast NBCUniversal, CSX, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and The Corps Network.