This week, Major League Soccer and Wells Fargo announced that Circleville City Schools food services director Suzie Gerhardt has been named as one of 26 Community MVPs that were selected for making a positive impact during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In March of 2020, when state school closures turned the district into a remote learning school, many students and families worried where meals would come from. Within 72 hours, Gerhardt assembled a team to distribute meals in her community. From March 16th to June 22nd, Gerhardt purchased supplies, mobilized volunteers, and organized mobile meal deliveries to bring more than 105,000 meals to kids in the Circleville area.
This effort continues today, where her team has distributed an additional 12,000 meals on remote learning Fridays from August 25th-November 17th.
Earlier this year, fans throughout the soccer community had the opportunity to nominate themselves or individuals who have provided critical services, including healthcare professionals, social workers, teachers, first responders and many other essential workers keeping our communities resilient and safe. At the local level, Suzie was selected by Columbus Crew SC as the club’s Community MVP designee.
Through the 2020 MLS WORKS Community MVPs Program presented by Wells Fargo, $2,500 will be donated to a charity on behalf of each Community MVP, one representing each MLS club, for going above and beyond to serve their communities during these challenging times.
For her charity of choice, Suzie is allocating her award donation to Circleville High School’s Club Future initiative, a Drug Free Clubs of America affiliated program that promotes students to lead a drug-free lifestyle through randomized opt-in drug testing. As members of the club, students receive incentives in the form of discounts and free appetizers at partner restaurants and businesses, memberships to different organizations, and snacks and ‘school swag’ on testing days.
Gerhardt will also receive a donation to a 501(c)(3) charity of their choice, a customized adidas MLS jersey and an MLS adidas 2020 NATIVO XXV Official Match Ball. Both items, Gerhardt has generously donated to the Circleville City School Foundation as items that can be bid on for their upcoming Raise Your Paw Auction in February with proceeds going to support student initiatives in the school district.
To read Suzie’s profile, award visit MLSsoccer.com/CommunityMVP for additional information on this year’s Community MVPs.
On behalf of Circleville City Schools, we would like to congratulate Suzie and her entire food services team for their continued effort to make sure no child goes hungry during this pandemic, on remote learning days, and each day we are in school.