Malkmus receives community award

A name that consistently comes up in the People section of The Record-Courier is Marilyn Malkmus. A search of the archives shows several photos taken at fund-raising events, most that the 65-year-old Gardnerville resident has headed herself.

Malkmus, who already has three community awards hanging on the wall in her home office, won the Minden-Douglas Elks Lodge No. 2670 Citizen of the Year award, Saturday.

"I'm so appreciative, but it takes a lot of people to make things happen," said Malkmus on Monday. "I'm very fortunate to have wonderful friends here who are always willing to help out."

Receiving the award had been kept from Malkmus, who didn't find out until she walked in the Elks Lodge in the Gardnerville Ranchos Saturday night, for a dinner event she almost didn't attend.

Malkmus, who had been undergoing a chemical peel for a pre-cancerous skin condition and was feeling self-conscious about what her lip looked like, at first declined on her "free tickets."

"My husband planned it all out and invited all our friends," said Malkmus. "My neighbor called and said 'I have free tickets.' I said I can't go because of my lip and he said I needed to get out of the house.

"We walked in the (Elks Lodge) door ... it was pretty amazing. I'm very grateful that I went. Nobody really minded that my lip looked awful."

Malkmus won the Carson Valley Sertoma Club Service to Mankind award in 2001, the Carson Valley Active 20-30 Club Citizen of the Year award in 2001 and the Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce and Visitors' Authority Citizen of the Year award in 1999-2000.

Malkmus grew up in Southern California in the community of Glendora. She attended San Jose State College and graduated with a degree in home economics. She worked for Southern Cal Edison in their electric home living center. She later worked in management and marketing.

Malkmus and her husband, Carl, have been married 40 years. Carl owned a construction company and Marilyn worked with him. They lived in Los Alamitos, Calif. While living in Los Alamitos, Marilyn joined the Long Beach Children's Clinic, a non-profit corporation, and served many years on the clinic's board of directors, according to Bob Allgeier of the Elks Lodge, who wrote and read the speech when Marilyn received the award.

But it was not until they moved to Douglas County in 1991 that the couple really felt they had found a home. They had been looking for a place that was small, where people were friendly.

"This (town) was just perfect," said Marilyn. "It's a wonderful place to be where people are really caring for other people."

Allgeier highlighted Marilyn's contributions to Carson Valley in his speech:

"Marilyn became involved in Project Santa Claus in 1992. She was a volunteer and worked alongside founder Carol Judd until Carol's poor health forced her into retirement. Marilyn has served as the director for about 10 years. This past year was the largest year ever for Project Santa Claus. Over 290 families, which includes 670 children, were recipients of Christmas gifts. All of these people were Douglas County citizens who really needed the boost. The distribution center was at the Douglas County fairground and it was all gone in one day.

"She became involved with the Douglas County Food Closet in 1992 and has served on the board of directors since 1993.

"Marilyn and her friend Alice Nalder founded Project School Days in 1998 to help Douglas County school teachers provide materials to families who could not afford the supplies. Project School Days, in 2005, provided materials to about 480 students.

"She has volunteered at the library since 1997 and is responsible for book repair. She became a member of the library board in 2004 and also serves with the Douglas County Library Foundation.

"She is an honorary member of the Douglas County Sheriff's Mounted Posse. In January 2005 she put together a program called SPAM, standing for Sheriff's Posse Adopts Military, after finding that seven young men related to Posse members were serving in the military. A box of goodies, including snacks, magazines, toiletries and games are prepared and sent each month to those on active duty.

"You have earned this award by your continuing effort and your time spent benefiting us all," said Allgeier to Malkmus. "You can rightfully be proud."

n Jo Rafferty can be reached at or 782-5121, ext. 210.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment