On behalf of the children, volunteers and families of Kids Enjoy Exercise Now (KEEN), I am pleased and honored to be able to nominate Dan Murphy for the Daily Point of Light Award. His tireless commitment to serving children and young adults with disabilities in Montgomery County for more than a decade has been remarkable, and his efforts are a model for the way in which a single, motivated volunteer can change the way an entire community is served.
During the past 12 years, KEEN has had more than 8,000 volunteers participate in our nine local programs. In that time, we have had the good fortune to benefit from the volunteer and community service of many of the most committed and talented members of our community. In recent years, one volunteer stands out for his steadfast dedication to our program, for his unselfish efforts, and for his tireless work we enhance our program and the lives of the children we serve in Montgomery County: Dan Murphy.
KEEN provides free one-to-one sports coaching to children with severe and profound disabilities, without regard to a child’s financial resources or the severity of his or her disabilities. At our nine programs, our volunteers work on a one-to-one basis with children with such disabilities as Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome and Mental Retardation. More information on KEEN is available at www.keengreaterdc.org.
Dan first came to KEEN in 1999 as a volunteer recruited from the DC Cates organization located in Washington, DC. His interest in getting involved with KEEN was not dictated by having any family member affected by disability, instead he articulated a strongly felt desire to make a difference in the community. Dan made an immediate impression on our Board members and was asked to join our Board of Directors.
Dan brought to the KEEN board of directors a new vision and energy that mobilized the entire KEEN community. He nearly single-handedly conceived and implemented a new KEEN Board structure and focus that has had much to do with our recent success and the strong foundation we have for the future. With Dan’s help, we were able to establish new board committees that allowed us to function more effectively in different areas such as communication, marketing, and development. He volunteered to help with the most time sensitive and demanding structural functions of KEEN, and delivered results that consistently tough the lives of children with disabilities and their families. From the outset, he has been willing to do anything necessary to help KEEN achieve its strategic and tactical objectives.