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Molly Nichelson Is Council’s Volunteer of the Year

By October 5, 2018Membership (CS)
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Molly Nichelson, senior specialist of grassroots outreach at the American College of Cardiology, has been named the Public Affairs Council’s 2010 “Volunteer of the Year,” a distinction reserved for those who have made outstanding contributions to the Council and the public affairs profession.

“Molly exemplifies the type of volunteer who helps to make the Council a vibrant organization,” said Council President Doug Pinkham. “She not only employs cutting-edge techniques in her public affairs program, she also proactively shares her experience with her colleagues in the community.”

The Council’s executive committee chose Nichelson for blazing new trails in the use of social media and sharing her discoveries with Council staff and members.

She was also recognized for her energetic involvement in the Council: She was among the first to join the Council’s Political Involvement Network, served twice on the National Grassroots Advisory Committee, attended six Council conferences since 2005 and spoke at two, was a mentor at this year’s Grassroots Conference and often recruits others to join the Council, attend its events or speak at its conferences.

Nichelson, who accepted the award at the Council’s fall board meeting in Phoenix, Ariz., said she was “thrilled and honored” and that she loves working with the Council, a non-partisan, non-political association for public affairs professionals with more than 600 members.

Nichelson – whose mother, grandmother and sister traveled from Nichelson’s native San Diego to watch her accept the award – joined the American College of Cardiology in 2005. She graduated with a bachelor’s in public relations from Wisconsin’s Marquette University.

Watch the video of Molly accepting the award here.

The Council has named a Volunteer of the Year annually since 2008. The award recognizes recipients’ contributions not only to the Council but also to the public affairs profession as a whole.

Previous winners are:

  • Shannon Bearinger, senior business information analyst, Nationwide Insurance (2009)
  • Ellie Shaw, director of federal government affairs, American Express (2008)

For more information about the award, visit