It is with very heavy hearts that we tell you that Marjorie (Marj) Shaw passed away on Sunday. Her impact was seen and felt on a daily basis. For everything Marj did for our agency, families and the people we support, she will be sorely missed. Her memory will be cherished as we continue to provide the highest level of quality services that Marj was very proud to share.
The information below was used for Marj’s 2012 Saratoga Springs Rotary Club Senior Citizen of the Year Award nomination. The purpose of this award is to recognize an individual senior citizen who has clearly demonstrated outstanding community service in Saratoga County. We nominated Marj for this award, which she won, because she demonstrated exceptional service to her community.
Marj’s relationship began with Saratoga Bridges in the late 1970’s when her son Timmy, a special education student at St. Mary’s School for the Deaf in Buffalo, needed a summer program. When he graduated in 1983 he began working in our Ballston Spa workshop. Marj and her husband became friendly with other parents including several Board Members. When she was asked if she would be interested in being on the Board herself, she gladly accepted. Upon her retirement from a full time position at Saratoga Hospital Lab in 1995, she had a more flexible schedule and more time to volunteer.
Marj was the Vice President and longtime Secretary of the Board of Directors. Living close by to our administrative offices allowed her to be easily accessible to the agency. She was the Chair of our Guardianship Committee, gladly helped to volunteer serving refreshments to the runners at our Great Pumpkin Challenge and recruited others to join in. Every year when the agency embarks on our Membership Campaign, she encouraged others to join as members because she believed people needed to know that the more members we secures, the more voting power we have on NYSARC’s Board of Governors. Truly, Marj was a fervent advocate for more than 40 years.
Marj had a personal commitment to Saratoga Bridges’ mission as well as to numerous other organizations, human service agencies and religious institutions. Many people throughout our community were very fortunate to receive her generosity of time, expertise, experiences, knowledge, enthusiasm and support. She proved to be a woman of her word through her actions. We believe Marj was a remarkably humble woman who was committed to her close-knit family, Saratoga Bridges and a healthy lifestyle. Her strong sense of faith provided her with the foundation to be an invaluable role model in our community.
Marj made a concerted effort to make a difference. Her volunteer affiliations included:
- Being a member of the Malta Ridge Volunteer Fire Company Auxiliary for more than 50 years
- Teaching Sunday School, playing the piano and singing in the Choir at The Ballston Center Presbyterian Church
- Usher at Proctors
- Dunning Street Cemetery Association for the Town of Malta
- Malta Senior Center
- Saratoga Bridges
In addition, Marj coordinated Samaritan’s Purse, a Christian relief and evangelism organization that ships shoe boxes filled with school supplies, personal hygiene items and Christmas gifts for needy children in Africa. Her past volunteer endeavors have been as a 4-H Leader, American Red Cross Blood Drive Coordinator and Special Olympics Coach.
Marj stated that she has felt she could not always give financially but that she had other ways of contributing. Her motto was “If you give your time, energy and financial resources YOU in turn will be rewarded!” Further, Marj said, “When the agency is recognized for the tremendous job they do in the community, I feel a sense of pride that I am a part of it. More importantly, Timmy passed away in 1987 and I feel that maintaining a connection to Saratoga Bridges ensures that the services he received will continue and expand to meet the present and future needs.”