Special to the Times-Record
Dean Pedersen was the first recipient of the newly established V-500 Volunteer of the Year award. The award is given to a V-500 board member who has extraordinarily given back to the program. Shown L to R: Alison Kasowski, VCSU assistant director of annual giving, Dean Pedersen, Larry Robinson, VCSU director of advancement.
The V-500 Board of Directors held its annual Recognition Dinner on Saturday, Dec. 8 on the Valley City State University campus
V-500 is a scholarship program founded in 1972 by a group of people who realized the importance of scholarship support for Valley City State University students.
A highlight of the dinner was Dean Pedersen receiving the first volunteer of the year award given out by the V-500 board.
Pedersen said he was honored because â€śI got the most referralsâ€ť for people interested in helping the scholarship program.
Pedersen said he first got on the board on Nov. 4, 2003. Pedersen sees his chore as â€ścalling many peopleâ€ť asking them to contribute to the scholarship fund. He said the program started in 1972, helping to raise money for scholarships.
He said peoples and organizations were originally asked to pledge money over a five year period, â€śand this year we switched to four years.â€ť
Pedersen said the V-500 program has been successful the past couple of years. â€śOverall, we gave out $750,000 in scholarships last year and this year,â€ť and more than $250,000 was raised in the current year for scholarships.
â€śIt is a lot of work. Many people give a pledge, and many renew. With enrollment up at the college there is more demand too.â€ť
Pedersen said one selling point for contributing is pledges are tax deductible.
Alison Kasowski, VCSUâ€™s assistant director of annual giving, said, â€śThe V-500 Board of Directors is pleased to award Dean with this honor. Deanâ€™s dedication to V-500 and persistence in each campaign for the last nine years is admirable. He has become an icon of V-500.â€ť
Larry Robinson, executive director of university advancement, said Tuesday, â€śDean Pedersen has distinguished himself as one of our most dedicated and committed volunteers. His contributions to V-500 are without question. He is an absolute treasure and an ambassador for V-500 and Valley City State University. We are fortunate to have him as a valued member of our team. He is a class act in every way and a personal friend as well! Dean is most deserving as our V-500 Volunteer of the Year Award recipient.â€ť
In an email sent to V-500 board members who did not attend Kasowski said, â€śWe had an outstanding turnout â€“ (VCSU food services) said they served 132 people! It was nice to see the room filled, and we received many compliments on the meal.
â€śBecause many of you were not able to attend the banquet, I thought you may be interested to know who received the V-500 Volunteer of the Year award. The recipient enlisted an outstanding 10 new or renewed memberships during this campaign, and that person is Dean Pedersen! Dean is serving his ninth year on the V-500 Board and has always given it his full commitment. Thank you again Dean, and congratulations!
â€śWe are very close to meeting (our) goal, but will need to make one final push. If we all make one more contact I think weâ€™ll get there before Christmas â€“ maybe this one contact could be someone that is not on your list, if youâ€™ve already exhausted those possibilities. Please remind your contacts that gifts to V-500 are tax deductible! I will keep you updated on our progress as we get closer.â€ť
For more information about the V-500 Scholarship program, contact the Office of Advancement at 845-7203.
Pedersen said most people pledge for five year periods. â€śIf itâ€™s a $1,000 pledge, itâ€™s usually $200 per year.â€ť
Pedersen said V-500 wants multi-year commitments â€śso we can count on getting the money in the future. Most (people who pledge) come through.â€ť
The V-500 has savings which are invested through the VCSU Foundation â€śto get the best possible rateâ€ť on investments, Pedersen said.