REM Award Honorees (2019) — Phyllis Rand (American Red Cross)

Upon completing her term as president of a regional organization for water and wastewater treatment professionals, Phyllis Arnold Rand began searching for another nonprofit organization to join. Phyllis had a difficult time choosing from amongst the wonderful organizations in need of volunteers until, one day, she discussed her dilemma with her mother.

Her mother told Phyllis about a time long ago when their young military family of four girls and two boys relocated to a new Army base while their father was serving in Vietnam. The family was experiencing a problem that, despite her mother’s many phone calls to military aid organizations, nobody would or could help — that is, until she called the American Red Cross. The Red Cross cut through the military bureaucracy and sent a message that ultimately reached Phyllis’s father. That assistance by the Red Cross turned things around for the young Arnold family when nobody else could or would help. So, in 2009, and more than 40 years later, Phyllis had the opportunity to repay the American Red Cross for helping her family. She has been an active volunteer ever since.

Phyllis currently serves the Red Cross as a Government Operations Manager where she works with local, county, state, federal and tribal government agencies before, during and after disaster; as National Shelter System Lead for Maine, where she maintains the database of Maine’s emergency shelters for the Red Cross; as a Mass Casualty/Mass Fatality Family Assistance Team Member; and as an Advanced Disaster Instructor. She founded and currently chairs the Red Cross of Maine’s Disaster Volunteer Leadership Team.

During regional and statewide emergencies and disasters, Phyllis staffs the Mass Care Desk in the State Emergency Operations Center at the Maine Emergency Management Agency. In 2011, she began deploying to national Red Cross disaster relief operations. Her most recent national deployments were the California Wildfires (2017), Hurricane Irma (2017) and Hurricane Matthew (2016).

Phyllis was added to the 2016 and 2017 Maine Governor’s Rolls of Honor for volunteering over 500 hours per year. She received the Red Cross of Maine’s Exceptional Volunteer Award in 2015 and this year participated in, “Sound the Alarm, Save a Life,” a nationwide Red Cross campaign where local volunteers install smoke detectors in residents’ homes.

While Phyllis joined the Red Cross to repay a favor to her family, she stays because she believes in the “Seven Fundamental Principles” of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement: Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary Service, Unity and Universality.

For more information about the American Red Cross of Maine, please visit its website.

← PreviousAll HonoreesAwards HomeNext →

Skip to toolbar