Volunteer Award 2020

This year the Association’s Board of Directors has approved an exceptional process for the Volunteer of the Year Award Nomination. This exception to the regulations is due to the extraordinary conditions of the pandemic that dominated our activities in 2020.   

We recognize that, during the year 2020, the restrictions imposed by the pandemic have severely limited the traditional volunteer activities of our members, but, at the same time, the pandemic has caused an economic and public health crisis throughout the region.  However, due to the pandemic itself, it is very possible that there was more volunteer work than in a normal year.

An example of voluntary work carried out by many retirees came from the most important charity that the Association carried out this year. In April 2020, the Association launched the COVID-19 Campaign, with an extraordinary budget of $45.000, which had the generous support of the Bank with $50.000 and the Credit Union with $14.192,78, in addition to individual contributions. The Association coordinated the humanitarian activities of the campaign, to help reduce the impact of the pandemic on the most vulnerable population in the countries of the region. 

The Campaign’s Working Group, made up of retirees from the Headquarters and Chapters, has devoted a great deal of effort, time, and professional experience to campaigning. Especially the Chapters “got on the job” and did an extraordinary job identify the best executors and projects, those that could have the highest impact to alleviate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. They contacted foundations, youth groups, parishes, universities, and community associations, who were helped to shape their respective projects, defining the objectives, scope, methodologies and outcome indicators, among other aspects. And then follow up and evaluate a total of 26 assistance projects. This was an admirable volunteer work that was carried out by leaders and other members of the branches, for the benefit of the most vulnerable populations in their respective countries.   

The regular practice has been to choose two retirees as “Volunteers of the Year.” But the Volunteer of the Year can be an entity, more than one individual or a group of people.

In this spirit, the Association has decided to designate the “COVID-19 Project Managers” as Volunteer of the Year 2020. This is a tribute to each and every one of the retirees, in the 15 Chapters, who were commissioned of contributed to prepare one or more projects for the COVID-19 Campaign. It was the collective support of this group of retirees that has allowed this campaign to be a success and have had such an impact.

As it is a collective recognition, there will be no additional monetary donation this year to the funds that were awarded to projects under the COVID-19 Campaign. And as a collective recognition of unprecedent work, we have included members of the leadership of the Association and the Chapters, who have contributed to making these projects a reality. Each of the winners will receive confirmation of this recognition in writing, expressing our gratitude and congratulations. We will proceed to read the names of the winners.

During the reading: a collage of fotos of the projects will be presented.

At the end of the reading, we will name each of the honored colleagues (list attached)


  • Argentina: Alicia Pinotti, Susana Filippa and Carlos Abeledo
  • Bolivia: José A. Navia and Armando Godínez
  • Brasil: Maria Aparecida Tonello
  • Chile: Andres Marchant and Álvaro Beca 
  • Colombia: Israel Acosta, Rubén Serna and Óscar Sartorio
  • Costa Rica: María Isabel Olaso
  • Ecuador: Mario Mejía and Edgar Carvajal 
  • El Salvador: Guillermo Villacorta and Roberto Linares 
  • Florida: Rodrigo Mayén Girón 
  • Guatemala: Conchita Montenegro
  • Nicaragua: Nelly Wheelock 
  • Panamá: Lizeth Esquivel y Tomás Engler
  • Paraguay: Eduardo Casati, Enriqueta Zimmermann, Edmundo Sosa and Iluminada de Lauro
  • Perú: Guillermo López and María Elena Ramírez 
  • Uruguay: Magdalena Carriquiry and Martín Stabile 

A formal note of congratulations and thanks is sent to each of the honorees. This would be reported during the Assembly.

The occasion will also be propitious to encourage the honorees to maintain contact with the executors, both to carry out some ex-post evaluations, and to involve colleagues from their respective affiliates to carry out some voluntary work with these institutions.  

At the end of the reading: it is proposed to present a video (less than five minutes) with testimonies that allow us to appreciate the high degree of knowledge and the close contact with the executors of the projects maintained by the respective managers.  

Now I turn the floor to Álvaro Beca on behalf of the winners.

Alvaro Beca: Thank you Claudia for this beautiful and exciting tribute. I believe I represent all the honorees by pointing out that, for us, it was a professional and personal accomplishment to carry out this voluntary work for the benefit of very vulnerable groups in our respective countries. We receive many expressions of appreciation from these beneficiaries, which encourages us to be able to act with the same enthusiasm when circumstances require it.

We must thank Miguel Aliaga for his effort and patience, always collaborating and supporting us to solve the various detailed problems that were presented to us. Thank you. I turn the floor over to Miguel for a few final words.

Miguel Aliaga: Thank you very much, Claudia and Álvaro, on behalf of myself and all the members of the Covid-19 ad-hoc committee. It was a pleasure and an honor to work with such an outstanding group of retired Bank professionals. The success of this campaign has demonstrated the ability of the members of the Association to manage projects that have had a very positive impact on the lives of the beneficiaries at a relatively low cost. Hats off to all of you, thank you very much again for all your support and congratulations on this well-deserved award!