Brandon Little, Norman Bibeault and Paula Lindsey receive Freeport-McMoRan's 2017 Volunteer Excellence Award.

September 25, 2017

Little, Bibeault and Lindsey may sound like a law firm, but in actuality, it's a powerhouse trio of volunteer excellence.

Brandon Little, Norman Bibeault and Paula Lindsey are the winners of the company's 2017 Volunteer Excellence Awards honoring outstanding North America site employees who have demonstrated exceptional dedication and commitment to building stronger communities through their volunteer efforts.

The winners were selected by a committee of company representatives and community members who rated each nomination on approach, significance and impact on the community.

"There are many employees who volunteer their time who we want to recognize and thank. This program allows us the opportunity to do that and highlight those employees whose service has gone above and beyond in their dedication and impact," said Tracy Bame, Director of Social Responsibility and Community Development, and President – Freeport-McMoRan Foundation. "We look to recognize exceptional volunteers who have demonstrated a commitment to service that truly stands apart."

Collectively, this year's winners volunteered at their organizations for more than 29 years and more than 670 hours annually.

Training volunteers to help save lives

Little, a Health and Safety Technician at Safford, took top honors and won a $10,000 grant for the Pima Volunteer Fire Department. He's been volunteering there for the last nine years, contributing more than 240 hours a year. 

Along with his other contributions, Little created, organized and facilitated an EMT training program for members of the department.

"Brandon used his easy going personality and vision for excellence to build and maintain a highly qualified and trained EMS program and tailored the curriculum to accommodate the busy lives of the class members," said Adam Hoopes, Fire Chief, who nominated Little for the Volunteer Excellence award.

The class Little created is the first of its kind, and will result in the department certifying six additional EMTs, Hoopes said.

"We received over 200 medical calls last year, and this class will significantly benefit our community and valley in responding to calls," he said.

Doing his best, Scout's honor

Bibeault, a Diagnostic Mechanic at Norwich, received a $2,500 grant for Boy Scouts of America, Norwich, Conn., where he has volunteered for the past 14 years, giving more than 280 hours per year. He has served as Acting Assistant Scout Master for 14 years and Committee Chairman for a year.

Bibeault has mentored multiple boys and young men in their efforts to learn survival skills, expand their knowledge of the natural world, and learn the values needed to make ethical and moral choices during their lifetimes.

Over the years, he has given his time to help Scouts complete their Eagle Scout projects, helping eight Scouts reach the highest rank of Eagle and countless others achieve the required knowledge and skills to advance through the ranks of the Boy Scouts under his leadership.

One cause, many hats

Lindsey, Administrative Assistant at the El Paso Refinery, earned $2,500 for Ramona Elementary School, where she has volunteered for the past six years, contributing about 150 hours per year.  She's taken on multiple roles during her years of service at the nearby school, from guest reader to helping with fundraisers and collecting needed materials for school projects. Lindsey also serves on the district's Parent Advisory council and has been proactive in the school's STEM program.

"Paula is a great asset to the students, teachers and staff," Irene Ahumada Medline, Ramona Principal, wrote in her nomination form. "She has spread her cheer, teamwork and efficient work ethic throughout our campus. She values our school mission and is committed to helping students succeed."

For more information about the Volunteer Excellence Award and other volunteer grants, visit




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