Local man recognized for Community Service with Jefferson National Award

By Stephanie Sokol

After years of community service around the Rochester area, Timothy E. Crawford, Rochester resident and Nationwide insurance agent, was honored with a Jefferson National Award for Community service in June.

“It was a total surprise to receive the award,” Crawford said. “Hundreds of people were speaking about the phenomenal work they did for their communities. It’s an honor.”

The Jefferson Award is considered the “Nobel Prize” of public service. Crawford was one of two people chosen from over 250 submissions, according to a press release by Nationwide.

Created four years ago, the award is presented at local and national levels, according to Frank McIntosh, chief operating officer and managing director for the awards. With a tie to Thomas Jefferson, the goal of the awards is to get more people involved in community service by recognizing the good deeds of Americans helping others.

“Timothy is quite an extraordinary man,” McIntosh said. “He’s a hero. He doesn’t care about recognition. (He is a) great American who cares about fellow citizens.”

Crawford moved to Rochester 20 years ago from Westerville, Ohio to open up a Nationwide branch office in Michigan. Enjoying downtown’s charm and sense of community pride, he began participating in community service for downtown Rochester and throughout the area.

During his residence in the city, he has been involved in many community organizations, including a membership with the Rochester Regional Chamber of Commerce, chairman for Rochester’s annual Christmas parade, board member and chairman of three Crittenton Hospital organizations, district chairman of the Chippewa District for the Boy Scouts of America and membership with the Rochester Rotary Club.

According Michael Robinson, Nationwide director of office, the organization is excited to have one of the faces of their company reflected on in such a positive light.

“Tim’s commitment to the community over a long period of time made him stand out,” Robinson said. “Representing the company and community, he exemplifies everything an agent should be.”

After receiving the Nationwide Corporate Community Service Award multiple times, Nationwide entered Crawford for a Jefferson Award. While he was both very surprised and happy to win the award at the Washington Gala, he hopes it will encourage others to give back.

“To know you’ve put a little dent in the community creates betterment,” Crawford said. “There’s a huge need for more community service. Regardless of age, if you find something you are passionate about and put your time towards the cause, it’s amazing to see changes happen.”