George and Barbara Groome Receive 2014 Tocqueville Award

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United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County is pleased to honor and celebrate George and Barbara Groome, recipients of the 2014 Tocqueville Award. The award was presented during the Tocqueville Society's annual dinner at the home of Keith and Barbra Love on Thursday, January 22. This prestigious award recognizes outstanding volunteer service to our community through personal leadership and long-time commitment. To view a gallery of the evening, please click here.

For decades, the Groomes have been two of Buncombe County’s premier volunteers, donating time, talent and expertise in countless ways to improve lives and make our community a better place to live. George and Barbara have served on the boards of many local nonprofits and were the 2013-2014 Chairs of the Tocqueville Society. With their guidance, a matching fund was established for the 2013 campaign to increase Tocqueville giving and expand membership. Their plan worked! As a result, more than $66,750 was raised. George is President and CEO of Colton Groome & Company and Barbara is an AVID teacher with Asheville City Schools.

"George and Barbara, I want to thank you on behalf of the YMCA of Western North Carolina and Western North Carolina as a whole," said Paul Vest, President and CEO of YMCA of Western North Carolina. "Your commitment to the community and the work that you've done and this recognition from United Way, know that it's one that's replicated and appreciated by all of us who work in nonprofits and work to make our community a better place."

Members of the Tocqueville Society are individuals and families who contribute at least $10,000 per year to the United Way. The society was named after Alexis de Tocqueville, a young French politcal thinker and historian who traveled to the United States and wrote extensively about its singular spirit of voluntarism and community service ethic.

The Tocqueville Award is given to an individual or couple whose outstanding volunteer service has demonstrated commitment and creativity and has inspired others to serve in Asheville and Buncombe County. The recipient of the award, the Tocqueville Society’s highest honor, remains unknown until the actual presentation. Past honorees include Barbara Blomberg and Buddy and Marilyn Patton, Janice and Joe Brumit, Jerry Sternberg, Pam and Jim Turner, Heather and Bill Lee, Charlie and Eleanor Owen, John and Diane Teeter, Charlie and Cary Owen, Jimbo and Robin Stickney, and Dot Hamill and Joel and Marla Adams.

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