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Emma Fleshner receives volunteer award

November 8, 2015
Reinbeck Courier

On Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015 Easter Seals Iowa hosted their ANNUAL CELEBRATION, to recognize team members and clients at the Des Moines Downtown Marriott Ballroom where one of the Pony Express Riders of Iowa's youngest County Chairperson, Emma Fleshner was awarded the "Stub & Vi Johnson, volunteer of the year award."

Emma, daughter of Chris & Holly Fleshner of Reinbeck, now 11 years old and is in the 6th grade.

Emma first volunteered with the Pony Express Riders of Iowa in 2012 at the Morrison Breakfast when she was eight. It was during that event that Emma decided to be the Grundy County Pony Express Chair, because Grundy didn't have one at the time. She volunteered her dad Chris to be her assistant, while he was in the restroom, a post he still holds to this day. Chris believes Emma was savvy enough to know she would need a driver!

Article Photos

Emma and her family at the award ceremony in Des Moines.
Photo submitted

Emma started doing pony rides and collecting money. She worked on getting a grant from a local church that really got the collections rolling. This past year Emma created an auction event in conjunction with the Central Iowa Exchange and Horse Sale in Aplington, Iowa. She worked for weeks getting donations ready and preparing for the sale. Emma and her family were really excited about how well it turned out and the amount of support they received during the auction. Making fundraising goals and reaching them is really important to Emma. Her family reports they are trying to keep up with her now, as her goal is to plan a ride, dance and auction. Since taking over as chair in 2008, Emma and Grundy County have raised more than $10,000 to benefit Easter Seals Camp Sunnyside and thousands of Iowans with disabilities they serve.

Emma is an amazing advocate, passionate about her cause, and her enthusiasm encourages others. Pony Express Coordinator Carole Bailey says, "Once you meet Emma, you'll never forget her. She inspires us all!"



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