Before retiring in 2009 after 38 years of working for the Guatemalan government and in the retail sector, City of Doral resident Marina Penagos was looking for volunteer opportunities and responded to an ad to become a Volunteer Ambassador at Miami International Airport. Since Marina loved to travel, she thought this would be the perfect fit.
Thirteen years later, after assisting hundreds of travelers at the global gateway, Marina was named MIA’s Volunteer Ambassador of the Year at the airport’s annual Volunteer Ambassador Recognition Gala on April 20, in the middle of National Volunteer Week. For her service, Marina received two tickets from American Airlines to travel anywhere in the continental U.S., the Caribbean, Canada, or Mexico.
Nearly every Friday morning, Marina can be seen at MIA’s information counter in the Concourse D international greeter’s lobby, helping visitors find their way. She has also helped to entertain the airport’s youngest passengers with the MIA Volunteer Ambassador children’s cart, full of educational activities and giveaways.
Dozens of volunteers 16 years old and up dedicate their time to assisting MIA visitors during four-hour shifts at least twice a month. For their service, Volunteer Ambassadors receive free parking, discounts at the airport and local attractions, and other rewards. To volunteer at MIA or to learn more, visit the MIA Volunteer Ambassador web page.
To request materials in accessible format, Sign Language Interpreters, CART services and/or any accommodation to participate in any Miami-Dade Aviation Department (MDAD) public meetings and events please email the ADA Office at ADAcoordinator@miami-airport.com or call the office in 305-876-7747 five days in advance to initiate your request. Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing may also call 711 (Florida Relay Service).