Tour guide Janet Schaeffer snags 2018 Volunteer of the Year

Janet Schaeffer cried when she heard her name. She was moved to be recognized as the 2018 Volunteer of the Year. 

The tour guide collected her award at Sunday’s family potluck, where we honored some of our special volunteers. It was at the close of Volunteer Appreciation Week. 

Maryssa Hill, our volunteer coordinator, said she knew when Janet started more than three years ago that she’d be a great fit as a tour guide. 

“She just has one of those really engaging personalities,” Maryssa said. “You can’t help but like her from the beginning. She’s really funny. She’s able to easily adjust to last-minute changes and plans. She just kinda goes with it.” 

Maryssa will always remember Janet’s first tour. Maryssa was set to lead, Janet the tour assistant. But at the last minute, Maryssa told Janet she was going to lead the tour; she didn’t think she was ready. 

“She nailed it, which of course I knew she was going to do,” Maryssa said of her model tour guide, who now carries tour assistants under her wing and lets Carolina Tiger Rescue staff know when a volunteer is ready to leave the nest and lead their own tour. 

Janet was very deserving of the big award! 

Ruth Stalvey, left, presents Janet Schaeffer with the 2018 Volunteer of the Year award 

Ten additional volunteers were recognized at the potluck. 

Carolina Rescue is home to more than 150 active volunteers who work as hard as we do to care for the animals and support our mission of saving and protecting wild cats! 


Kim Kies, left, won All The Gold Stars presented by keeper Larissa

Ivy Morgan, center, won Sharing The Love, along with Emily Hudek (not pictured) presented by keepers Cara, left, and Larissa

Katie Jones, left, won Leaving On A Jet presented by keeper Cara

Cheryl Miller (not pictured) won Keeping Them Together, and Jan Dye (not pictured) won Knows All The Things presented by Maryssa

Sarah Moyer, left, won No Need To Study presented by keeper Larissa

Allyssa Pollock (not pictured) took home Make All The Enrichment presented by keeper Lauren

Lisa Wallace (not pictured) won Just Keep Scooping presented by Lauren

Logan Everett (not pictured) won Construction Rookie of the Year presented by Tiffany