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updated: 10/4/2012 6:25 PM

Volunteer, firefighter honored for contributions to Buffalo Grove

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Aptakisic-Tripp School District 102 board member Ellyn Ross was honored this week as the recipient of the 2012 Bill Reid Community Service Award for her work in the Buffalo Grove community.

The award, which Ross accepted during a Buffalo Grove village board meeting, was created by the Rotary Club as a tribute to Bill Reid -- educator, Village Trustee, and a founding member of the Rotary Club of Buffalo Grove. It recognizes the long-term contributions of individuals or businesses to the community.

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"I'm honored and humbled to be here tonight," said Ross, who thanked District 102 and Stevenson High School District 125 for "allowing us -- the community, the parents -- to be part of our children's education."

Ross recently received Stevenson's Those Who Excel, Award of Merit: Community Volunteer. She began volunteering at the high school, spending 11 years in the College/Career Center and another six working with the Freshman Mentor Program and Odyssey. She has been co-president of the Stevenson High School Foundation for the past seven years and was instrumental in developing the Local Scholars Reception program.

She served District 102's Parent Teacher Organization for many years and was elected to the school board in April 2003.

Ross received a trophy and $1,000 will be donated in her name to Rotary and the charity of her choice.

"It is my pleasure and my passion to serve all the children of our community as best as I can," she said.

Also this week, the Rotary honored firefighter/paramedic Glenn Bird as its Firefighter of the Year.

Fire Chief Terry Vavra said Bird is the fire department's assistant EMS coordinator, a role in which he helps new paramedics learn their skills.

"They are better paramedics and we are safer because of his time," Vavra said.

Bird thanked Rotary and every member of the fire department.

"We work as a team," he said. "None of these things could have happened without every single member's help and support."

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