A retired administrative assistant/budget analyst with the Navy was honored Thursday night as Anne Arundel County's most outstanding volunteer.
Mary Collins-Wilson was selected by a panel of judges from 600 nominees for her work with young people at Mount Olive African Methodist Episcopal Church in Annapolis.
She works with an after-school program at the church that provides help with homework and arranges other activities and guest speakers.
Collins-Wilson was surprised at being selected. "I knew I was nominated, but I had no idea," she said.
Collins-Wilson was nominated by the pastor of the church, the Rev. Johnny Calhoun, and two church members, Delores Chambers and Audrey Goldsborough.
Collins-Wilson calls her work with the after-school program her main activity there, but the Navy retiree has also coached baseball and organized a camp. She is an assistant facilitator for the Drug Awareness Program, as well.
She notes that most of her community service activities are geared to children and senior citizens, both of which are natural extensions of her family life.
She was involved at her children's schools from elementary school through college. "I like to see kids involved and excel. There's no limit to what they can do," she said.
From taking care of her parents, she found she liked working with older people, as well. She prepares favorite foods that they are no longer able to make, and arranges rides to doctor's appointments.
Collins-Wilson will represent Anne Arundel County in the Maryland You Are Beautiful program.