Two individuals who devoted many years to helping others and serving their community were recently honored with the highest award that the Rotary Club of Oxford can bestow upon non-members.
Sandy Weaver, the retired executive director of Love In the Name of Christ (Love INC) of North Oakland County, and Sue Bossardet, former president of the Oxford Village Council, each received the G.E. Meads Award.
Established in 2000, the award is presented to non-Rotarians who exemplify the club’s motto “Service Above Self” by making significant contributions to the community. Named for the late Dr. G.E. Meads, a local dentist who helped charter Oxford’s Rotary Club in 1937 and served as its first president, the award has been presented to 12 people over the last two decades.
Weaver spent about eight-and-a-half years leading Love INC before retiring as executive director. She currently serves as the organization’s office manager.
Launched in 2007, Love INC operates a clearinghouse, or call center, that serves as a contact point for folks in need. When people call in, their situation is evaluated and their needs are identified. They’re then referred to local churches and agencies with the necessary resources to provide whatever assistance is required.
Being named a G.E. Meads Award recipient came as a “surprise” to Weaver. She said she helps others because it’s the right thing to do, not to garner accolades.
“It’s what God has asked us to do,” Weaver said. “You’re there for people and you try to give them not just a handout, but a hand up.”
Prior to Love INC, Weaver spent four-and-a-half years serving as treasurer for Oxford-Orion FISH, a local nonprofit that’s been feeding the hungry with its food pantry since 1973.
“That’s why I love this community – people work together to help those who need it,” she said. “I love the Rotary Club here because they do contribute monthly to Love INC.”
The club gives the organization $100 per month.
While Weaver served the community as part of the volunteer sector, Bossardet made her contributions as a member of the public sector. She served on the Oxford Village Council from 1994 to 2001 and again from 2013-18.
Over the years, Bossardet served on a variety of other local boards including the planning commission, Oxford Downtown Development Authority, North Oakland Transportation Authority, Polly Ann Trail Management Council and Oxford Area Cable Communications Commission.
Bossardet said being named a G.E. Meads recipient “came as a big surprise” because her involvement in local government has always been motivated by a desire to help the community and improve life here, not win awards.
“I love Oxford,” she said. “I don’t expect to be honored (for it).”
Bossardet called winning the G.E. Meads Award a “great honor” and said it particularly “meant a lot” to her because of the personal connections she has to it and the club.
Her late father, Ed Bossardet, was a Rotarian for more than 50 years and a past club president.
“He had perfect (meeting) attendance for all the years that he was involved,” she said. “My dad loved Rotary. He lived the Rotary creed.”
Bossardet also knew Meads. Years ago, he was her dentist.
“He was always cheerful . . . and he always had a sucker to give you,” she said. “I knew his family. I knew his wife – she was my kindergarten teacher.”