First person: Volunteer receives state recognition

CNJ staff photo: Liliana Castillo Millie Lees of Clovis says there is nothing better than doing something for someone else.

Millie Lees of Clovis was awarded the K. Rose Wood Memorial Award by the New Mexico Aging and Long-term Service Department for her work with AARP in Clovis and Portales. Because Lees suffered a stroke early last year, she can’t volunteer anymore. But Lees says there is nothing better than doing something for someone else.

Volunteerism: My husband George and I have been big volunteer for AARP in 1991. Before I retired, I volunteered 30-35 hours a week at my church. I taught Sunday school for 18 years. I’ve volunteered with the Roosevelt General Hospital auxiliary, Meals on Wheels, Senior Olympics, Portales Women’s Club, RSVP and the literacy council. I’m sure there’s more. I think it makes you feel good to do something for other people. I enjoyed associating with people and doing things to help seniors.

Award winner: I was shocked when they said I won the award. I was on the committee who selected those who got the award for nine years. I was elated that they picked me.

Me and George: George and I met at an AARP volunteer meeting. We got acquainted and as we kept meeting at meetings, we just kind of hit it off.

Country girl travels the country: I went to school to study accounting. I went to Southwestern Nazarene University and Georgetown University. I worked in New York City, Los Angeles and Washington D.C. It was quite amazing for a little country girl. I liked LA the most, where I lived for 14 years. It’s a relaxed way of life. I like little cities more than big cities. I love Clovis. People are different in Clovis. They’re very friendly and neighborly.

The K. Rose Wood Memorial Award was named after Wood who helped establish the first state office on aging in the 1960s and spearheaded the Commission on Aging.