Friday, March 31, 2023

Volunteer Standout

Volunteer Spotlight: Carmelita Pennington

Carmelita Pennington has spent much time collaborating with Volunteer Oxford

Carmelita Pennington has worked for North Mississippi Regional Center (NMRC) for six years and just took on a new role in the Administration Office for the Public Information and Volunteer Department. Pennington has spent much time collaborating with Volunteer Oxford and other volunteer organizations such as the Mississippi State Veterans’ Home.

“It is a place near and dear to my heart because I am a veteran,” Pennington says of her time spent with the Veterans’ Home. Being from Washington, D.C., and constantly surrounded by a veteran populous, she says she felt it “only made sense” to begin volunteering at the Veterans’ Home. Pennington agreed that volunteering has affected her life in many different ways, the most important being that it has made her a better and more understanding person.

“Volunteering is something that I truly believe in. I have always done things that are considered to be volunteering and were just never called volunteering. I have coached teams for my sons when they were younger and spent years at their schools involved in the PTA,” Pennington says. “Also, since I work in the Volunteer Department at NMRC, I have been able to reach so many throughout the community, and I really felt it would not be right for me to ask others to volunteer here at our organization if I am not out doing the same.”

North Mississippi Regional Center sponsors several events in which Volunteer Oxford has matched volunteers to service including Oktoberfest, Special Olympics, and the Very Special Arts Fair. They also utilize volunteers one-on-one with individuals in their daily lives on campus and in the community homes.

“In return, we at North Mississippi Regional Center have provided the same for Volunteer Oxford events,” says Pennington. “Myself and my Director B.J. Davis have worked closely with [Volunteer Oxford’s] Kelly Graeber in making sure that we all work hand-in-hand to make sure that our community benefits from what North Mississippi Regional Center and Volunteer Oxford provide,” she says.

As well as serving as a community volunteer and partner, Pennington also serves on Friends of Volunteer Oxford, the advisory council for Volunteer Oxford.

For more information on how to nominate someone for the Volunteer Spotlight, email or call 662-236-6662. For more information on volunteering in the Lafayette-Oxford-University community, visit Volunteer Oxford online at — Jamey Sharman, Volunteer Oxford Intern