Kevin Rowland Receives N. Philip Shelton Humanitarian Award

This year’s N. Philip Shelton Humanitarian Award will be presented to long-standing Kiwanis member, Kevin Rowland.

Born in 1964 in Evansville, Indiana, Kevin grew up in Warrick County on a dairy farm. After graduating from Tecumseh High School, Kevin joined the Marine Corps and served in Okinawa, Japan. He finished his tour of duty at the Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia and decided to then pursue a degree in surveying from Vincennes University.

Kevin was introduced to the practice of helping others by his parents, Arthur and Viola, and his five older sisters. His father was a long-time member of the Kiwanis Club of Elberfeld, Indiana and his mother also supported the Kiwanis Club by helping out during events and cooking meals. Both parents were also very active with their church, New Jerusalem United Methodist Church.

When he heard the news that he would be this years’ recipient of the N. Philip Shelton Humanitarian Award, he was “shocked”. “I think of myself as a humble guy and not really deserving of any accolades. I am just doing what I am supposed to do,” said Kevin.

Kevin’s list of volunteer experiences throughout his lifetime is impressive, to say the least. He joined the Elberfeld Kiwanis Club in 1988 and jumped right in to help the club with their park and baseball facility. He continued his service through Kiwanis on the Vincennes Kiwanis Club’s Board of Directors, served as the President of the Vincennes Club from 2015 to 2016, and is an active member of the Riley/Kiwanis K.I.D.S. Committee as a Regional Riley Advocate. He routinely makes the trip to Riley Hospital for Children to volunteer and had previously served as the Riley Fundraising Chair for the Indiana District of Kiwanis.

Kevin has been on the Knox County Development Corporation Board of Directors, and also served as Director for the Vincennes Area Builders Association, the Indiana Society of Professional Land Surveyors and Leadership Knox County. During his time volunteering with Leadership Knox County, Kevin and two other members formed “Up with Knox County,” a group that raised funding and worked on homes in Knox County for families in need. He was also recently presented with the “Right Stuff Award” by the Deputy Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Transportation for his service to others.

Throughout his years of volunteering and helping others, Kevin’s best experiences are those helping children in need. “Kids are kind of a big deal,” said Kevin. “They are our future and it is important that we continue to reassure them that someone is always in their corner.” Whether he is reading to the Vincennes Head Start children at PACE, volunteering at Riley Children’s Hospital, or participating in a Spartan Sprint to “Strikeout Type 1 Diabetes,” Kevin is dedicated to improving the lives of all children.

“I have known Kevin for a number of years and he is a dedicated volunteer who has a spirit of giving that is unmatched by anyone,” said David Roellgen. “He will do anything for others, especially for children.”

Kevin and his family moved to Hendricks County, Indiana in the summer of 2017. He and his wife, Marci, have been married for 27 years and have a ten-year-old son named Zacariah. The couple has also served as foster parents for the last 10 years. Kevin is currently a member of the Plainfield Optimist Club and serves on the Board of Directors for their baseball league.

Recently diagnosed with Stage 4 Renal Cancer, Kevin has received overwhelming support from his family and friends. “It seems like there is a common theme, especially in Southern Indiana, where no one fights alone,” said Kevin. “Throughout my cancer journey I have had people rally behind me and encourage me to keep fighting. Helping other people and children is easy and it is what Kiwanis is all about.”

Kevin will be presented with the Shelton Award on Sunday, November 4 at 2 p.m. in Eva Hill Auditorium at Good Samaritan’s Health Pavilion. The public is invited to attend.

A family physician in Vincennes, Dr. Shelton lived a life of dedication to his community and serving others. In recognition of his service, the Dr. N. Philip Shelton Humanitarian Award was established in 1998. The purpose of the award is to recognize and promote humanitarian achievement in our community.

Shelton Humanitarian Award nominees must be Knox County residents who have demonstrated extraordinary efforts in working to improve the general well being and happiness of others; worked consistently to meet the physical, social, economic and/or educational needs of individuals in our community; and exemplified the spirit of Dr. N. Philip Shelton by actions and deeds. Some of the past winners include: Horace Foncannon, Scott Shipman, Mark Hill, Siegfried E. Schleicher, Jimmie Morrison, Nancy Carie, Jennifer Jones, Velma Hendrix, John Lyons and Max Renshaw.

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