Marisa Thresher recognized as Camp Lejeune Military Spouse of the Year - Camp Lejeune Globe: News

Marisa Thresher recognized as Camp Lejeune Military Spouse of the Year

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Posted: Friday, May 24, 2019 5:30 am

Marisa Thresher, the wife of Sgt. Maj. Richard Thresher, sergeant major of II Marine Expeditionary Force, received the Camp Lejeune Armed Forces Insurance (AFI) Military Spouse of the Year Award at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, May 9.

Thresher received the AFI award, which recognizes military spouses nationwide, for her contributions to the local community.

When she retired from the United States Marine Corps as a first sergeant in 2006, Thresher started volunteering at several nonprofit organizations each time her husband changed duty stations.

“I was humbled at the nomination,” said Thresher. “I’ve been volunteering for almost 20 years, so receiving an award for things you do every day and don’t necessarily think about is quite humbling.”

The nomination process begins with a local vote, showcasing the nominee’s volunteerism. Next, another panel of judges reviews the nomination package and award criteria.

“The most important thing for me to accomplish with the Military Spouse of the Year title is to remind, encourage, and recruit others to volunteer,” Thresher said. “I want to encourage a ‘pay it forward’ attitude.”

When Hurricane Florence made landfall in 2018, Thresher and her husband felt that it may be best if she left the area. Despite the evacuation, Thresher contacted other spouses who had also evacuated and began coordinating hurricane relief donations for affected residents in the Onslow County area.

With the spouses’ help, she was able to begin shipping supplies and donations to her home in North Carolina, which became a distribution center for diapers, toiletries and cleaning supplies for families affected by the storm.

“AFI staff had called and informed us that she had won the award and had actually received more nominations than anyone they’d ever seen in the past in the 12 years that they have given these awards to,” said Sgt. Maj. Thresher. “It’s a confirmation that after 20 or so years of doing these things that it really has affected people in a positive way and that’s what she always wanted to do.”

For more information about the award or to nominate a deserving spouse, visit www.msoy.afi.org.