City Hall ceremony to honor pastor

At 10 a.m. on Thursday, The Rev. Dr. Tom Hast and other Red Cross volunteers and staff will be at City Hall for a flag-raising and proclamation ceremony.

During the ceremony, Hast will raise the American Red Cross flag in recognition of the nation’s everyday heroes who give of themselves and in some way help their community.

March was proclaimed as Red Cross Month 70 years ago by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Since 1943, every president has designated March as Red Cross Month.

"We could not have found a more appropriate person than Tom to show our gratitude to those selfless volunteers who help all of us here in the Mohawk Valley by giving their time to help their neighbor," said Jennifer Balog, community chapter executive of the Mohawk Valley.

Hast was deployed to Fort Worth, Texas, Shelter Operations during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita; he was a shelter manager in Houston, Texas, after Hurricane Ike; and to Vermont after Hurricane Irene.

Hast has also assisted in a number of local fires and other emergencies. He has donated over 100 pints of blood through the Red Cross.

Hast is the pastor of both Bartlett Baptist Church in Rome and Oneida Baptist Church.


In addition, he is a court-appointed advocate for the Peacemaker Program and past member and former chairman of the board of the Mohawk Valley Community Action Agency.