Clinic names top volunteers

Published 8:07 pm Friday, June 22, 2012

The Western Tidewater Free Clinic named its volunteers of the year during a recent ceremony.

The clinic honored a physician and dentist, a medical professional and dental professional, and a general volunteer.

Dr. Bernard Jamison received the physicians’ award, and R.L. Howell DDS & Associates received the dentists’ award.


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Debra Alphin, a nurse, received the health professional award.

“I was very surprised,” said Alphin, who graduated from Obici School of Nursing four years ago at the age of 50. She worked at Sentara Obici Hospital and now volunteers at the clinic and works on the family farm with her husband, Rex, an Isle of Wight County supervisor.

June Rice also was honored.

Susie Slack, a dental hygienist, received the dental professional award. She is a former resident of Suffolk and still works at Heriford and Heriford Smile Design and Dental Center on Meade Parkway, just down the street from the free clinic.

She has been volunteering for about two years, she said.

“I just love it,” she said. “It’s very meaningful and fulfilling. It’s just a happy place, and it’s fun to be there.”

In addition, Jinks Babey received the general volunteer award.

The clinic’s 240 volunteers nominated fellow volunteers for the honors.

“The award is a big honor given yearly to volunteers who go above and beyond what is expected of them in the line of duty,” said Volunteer Coordinator Vicki Butler.

The clinic operates on grants and donations. If interested in donating or becoming a patient, visit