BUCKHANNON — Although Buckhannon’s Volunteers In Police Service (VIPS) have not been as busy as usual this time of year, they did induct three new members—bringing their volunteer count up to 15.
The VIPS organization is typically involved with approximately 120 events annually; however, this year, they have only had 36 occasions to assist. They are taking advantage of the downtime by holding more training and refresher courses for their members.
The following three newly inducted VIPS members bring a variety of backgrounds to the program.
Brittney Wood is a lifelong resident of Upshur County and graduate of Buckhannon-Upshur High School. She is also an active member of Faith Tabernacle Church. When not assisting VIPS or working at ResCare, she enjoys raising her two girls, singing, spending time with family and friends, and giving back to her community through various organizations.
Sydney McDonald moved to Buckhannon in 2019 to pursue a BS in Biochemistry from West Virginia Wesleyan College. She anticipates pursuing a career in forensic toxicology upon graduation from WVWC. She had been an active volunteer in her hometown of Bridgeport, WV, and hopes to give back to her new community by being a part of VIPS. Some of McDonald’s volunteer activities have included STEM tutoring, co-organizing and hosting fundraising events for local homeless shelters, and assisting in equine therapy for children with cognitive disabilities.
Allen Nash moved to Upshur County in 1996 and has served as a coach and referee for several youth sports over the last nine years. After 32 years of service as a government employee, Nash retired in 2015. He now stays busy by volunteering with the Upshur County Public Library, Buckhannon Nature Park & Learning Trail, American Red Cross Disaster Services, and VIPS. This past January he was selected by the City of Buckhannon as a recipient of the Buckhannon Exemplary Service Testimonial (BEST) Award for his dedication and service to our community. Nash is currently fulfilling his duty to the American Red Cross Disaster Services in Texas and Louisiana in response to Hurricane Laura.
VIPS Coordinator Steve Wykoff stated, “We are excited to welcome three new members to our VIPS team: Brittney Wood, Allen Nash, and Sydney McDonald. These new members bring with them a wealth of experience, a love of our community, and the desire to make our community a better place by enhancing the positive relationship between the public and the Buckhannon Police Department. We look forward to working with Brittney, Allen, and Sydney during upcoming events. If you see them out and about town, be sure to say hello.”