DEARBORN — Bonnie Jobe, a fine arts and fitness instructor at Henry Ford Community College, recently was nominated by Michigan Local 1650 for the American Federation of Teachers Everyday Heroes Award for Higher Education.
Jobe is one of five semifinalists nationally in the Higher Education division. Semifinalists epitomize the spirit of public service, camaraderie and compassion, inspiring people to make a difference in their chosen fields and in their communities.
The semifinalist who receives the most votes will be named his or her division’s 2012 Everyday Hero and will be honored at this year’s AFT convention.
The AFT Everyday Heroes competition runs until April 29. To read the profiles of semifinalists and to vote for the finalist, go to www.aft.org/everydayheroes/. Voting is open to the public.
Jobe, who has taught at HFCC for 34 years, is no stranger to charitable causes. After losing both parents to cancer, she wanted to mark their lives in memorable ways. Upon her father’s death from lymphoma in 2001, she raised $10,000 in a matter of weeks for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and was named its Woman of the Year in 2002.
Finding a cure for breast cancer has become a personal crusade; it runs in her family, having claimed many relatives, including her mother in 1996. She has worked on several breast cancer fundraising events in the Detroit area. In 2004, Jobe was named Woman of the Year at HFCC’s Women’s Recognition Luncheon, which raises money for the HFCC Student Emergency Fund to help students overcome unforeseen financial hardships preventing them from continuing their education.
Additionally, she has co-chaired Henry Ford Health Systems “Red Heart Blues,” served as co-chairwoman for its first Vin Voage event and was one of the co-chairs for St. John Hospital’s “White Christmas Ball” for several years, raising $1.3 million over 10 years. In 2009, she became the chair for this event, raising enough money last year to buy new dialysis machines and flat-screen TVs for the Renal Therapy Department.
She has also raised money for Operation Smile, Children’s Hospital, Henry Ford Hospital, Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center, the Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the Detroit Historical Society, the Detroit Symphony, the Humane Society, the Women’s Survival Center and Cass Community Services, among other charities.
Additionally, Jobe has served as auction chairwoman for the Women’s Survival Center, raising money to provide food, clothing and shelter for abused women and their children. She has served as a committee member of Cass Community Services, helping to raise $185,000 in one year to help the needy and the homeless with a food service program and medical services for uninsured families and seniors.