By Sue DeWerff
For Hometown News
Donating his time to help people by moving furniture, donating clothing, fixing appliances, giving money to needy families and just being there with a shoulder to lean on are just a few of the many qualities Thomas Reed of Titusville says are just a part of his daily routine.
On Oct. 12 he was awarded the Reality Check Foundation Community Award and honored as an outstanding citizen in the community. In attendance to present the award were Congressman Bill Posey and state Senator Mike Haridopolis, as well as 40 others, including his family and many city of Rockledge employees.
Mr. Reed was nominated for the award by Rockledge city manager Jim McKnight. He was selected from a list of 20 nominees.
Thus far, three awards have been given by the Reality Check Foundation, a nonprofit charity that strives to educate both adults and teens to make good choices and offers scholarship programs and motivational seminars to the public.
"I was told that I was going to help the city of Rockledge move some furniture at their offices, and when I walked into a room full of dignitaries, I was shocked to find out the real reason I was there," said Mr. Reed, a six-year Waste Management employee for the city of Rockledge. "I felt like some kind of a celebrity during the presentation," he said.
A deacon at the Good Shepherd Church in Titusville and a choir member, Mr. Reed works with many pastors in Brevard County. He is an inspiration to many in his church, says Larry Lawton, president of the Reality Check Foundation. He believes in doing what he does is the right thing to do in life - helping others as much as he can.
Mr. Lawton is president and founder of the Reality Check Program, which helps teens and young adults to make good choices. He is an ex-convict and a certified paralegal after 11 years in federal prison. He now has a passion for helping young people before they are arrested, or worse.
Mr. Reed was presented with a $150 cash prize in addition to a plaque and several gift cards donated by local merchants throughout the county, including Wal-Mart, Matt's Casbah and Shorelane Bowling Center in Melbourne.
The Reality Check Foundation, founded by Mr. Lawton, offers a live radio show on AM 1300 WMEL and accepts donations for the Reality Check programs from both individual donors and business sponsors.
Reality Check DVDs and information relating to the charity can be acquired through the website, www.realitycheckfoundation.org, or by contacting Larry Lawton at (321) 321-2921.