A former City Council president, patrolman, volunteer who helps feed the homeless and nurse are among the veterans honored this year by the Rotary Club of Haverhill.
Michael J. Hart, Christina Rodriguez, Chris Seferlis, and Kristin Messer are the honorees during the Sixth Annual Veteran’s Day Awards program Thursday, Nov. 11, at 7 p.m. The event recognizes the continuing service of veterans and their dedication to the Rotary Club motto, “Service Above Self.”
Hart, a former city councilor and lawyer practicing more than 40 years, served as an infantry officer in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam War from 1969 to 1973, rising to the rank of captain. He is a Vietnam veteran.
Rodriguez has served the Haverhill Police Department for a year and previously was an officer in Orange County, Fla., and Salem State College. She began her military career with the Army National Guard in 2013 and transferred after four years to the Army Reserve where she is currently serving. She was recently promoted to sergeant in her Military Police unit.
Seferlis joined the Army Reserve in 1996 shortly graduating from Haverhill High School. He spent eight years in the Army Reserve with the 368th Engineering Battalion where he reached the rank of sergeant and was deployed for just over a year supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003/2004. Starting in 2006, he began volunteering at Emmaus House. Seferlis works at Microsoft as a cloud data specialist.
Messer, who graduated from Haverhill High School in 1979, is a nurse practitioner at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. After the Sept. 11, 2001 attack, she joined the Nurse Corps of the U.S. Air Force Reserves in 2003 to help with the care of the men and women who were wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan. She has been deployed to Kuwait and Iraq and has served at the U.S. Military Hospital in Landstuhl, Germany. She was awarded the Air Force Commendation medal for distinguished meritorious achievement and service. In 2020, Messer was deployed to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan serving as flight commander for the 455th Expeditionary Medical Group.
The Sixth Annual Veteran’s Day Awards will be seen HC Media’s Channel 22 and Facebook live. Director of Veteran Services Luis Santiago is the featured speaker. The event is also a Rotary Club fundraiser with proceeds being distributed to local non-profits and charitable causes that support veterans and community interests.