(WILMINGTON, Del.) AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN) today recognized 12 employee volunteers who were nominated to receive Jefferson Awards for public service.

Marty DeBerardinis, Director, Medicines Evaluation, was selected as the company’s grand winner to travel to the National Jefferson Awards Ceremony this June in Washington, DC, where he will be considered for a national award.

“These employees exemplify AstraZeneca’s commitment to improving the health of the communities where we live and work,” said David Nicoli, Vice President Corporate Affairs, AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP, and Jefferson Awards Trustee and member of the National Board of Selectors. “Our company is proud of our employees who devote their time, resources and expertise to better the lives of those in need.”

AstraZeneca sponsors the Jefferson Awards because the company believes that the common good is best served when connections are made between patients, advocates, policymakers, healthcare providers and nonprofit organizations to address key societal and health issues.

“The twelve AstraZeneca employees honored with Jefferson Awards have made a remarkable difference in the lives of others through volunteerism,” Jefferson Award co-founder Sam Beard said. “These individuals have taken action and achieved excellence in service and philanthropy.”

Delaware’s First Lady Carla Markell participated in the ceremony and said, “I am glad to see Delaware companies like AstraZeneca recognizing the value of volunteerism and the significant impact it can have on our local communities. Thousands of Delawareans are volunteering through work, through their communities or through portals like to find ways to make a real difference.”

DeBerardinis volunteers with Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic, an organization that uses over 1,500 volunteer pilots to transport patients in need to specialized medical care. DeBerardinis flies patients on his plane several times each year on his own time and at his own expense. He designs trips specific to each patient’s needs that take into consideration space needed for medical equipment and the accommodation of family members, among other factors. Since becoming an Angel Flight volunteer in 2004, DeBerardinis has volunteered for more than 30 missions.

“Marty plays an important role in connecting patients to critical medical care,” said Suzanne Rhodes, Director of Public Affairs, Angel Flight. “At Angel Flight we are grateful for his generosity and personalized commitment to the needs of every patient.”

In addition to the grand winner, AstraZeneca recognized 11 other volunteers for their services, including: Josh Carrizales, Pharmaceutical Sales Specialist Letita Cheatham, Associate Toxicologist Scientist Christine Clark, Executive Pharmaceutical Sales Specialist
John Corbett, Global Program Director
Patty Cozzone, Administrative Coordinator
Debbie Huff, Senior Analyst
Ron Martin, Senior Director, HR Business Planning
Kirsten Powell, Pharmaceutical Sales Specialist
Margaret Rivera, Senior Manager, Diversity & Compliance Wendy Shahwan, Business Planning Liaison Kristen Williams, Director, Alliances and Advocacy The Jefferson Awards for Public Service, a prestigious volunteer recognition program, was founded by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, former US Senator Robert Taft, Jr. and Delawarean Sam Beard in 1972 to create a “Nobel Prize” for public service.

The awards are presented both nationally and locally to encourage and honor individuals for their achievements and contributions through volunteer service.

About AstraZeneca
AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business with a primary focus on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines. As a leader in gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, neuroscience, respiratory and inflammation, oncology and infectious disease medicines, AstraZeneca generated global revenues of $32.8 billion in 2009. In the United States, AstraZeneca is a $14.8 billion healthcare business.