Connellsville chamber honors residents who are committed to community
It was an evening filled with honor, excitement and surprise as the Greater Connellsville Chamber of Commerce held its annual awards dinner, honoring several groups and individuals for their achievements and contributions to Connellsville and the surrounding area.
“This is an event where we recognize those groups and individuals who have made a difference and thank them for their contributions to the community,” Chamber President Bill Fiesta said. “They have all helped to make Connellsville a better place to be.”
Awards Committee member Gretchen Mundorff said the group enjoys surprising recipients. That goal was achieved on Tuesday night, because most of the award winners said they were not aware their names would be called.
“I was totally surprised,” said Daniel Cocks, who received a Beautification Award for his business, ArtWorks. “No one mentioned anything to me.”
Chamber board members made the presentations. Each winner received a plaque after descriptions of their achievements and contributions were explained to the crowd of nearly 150.
The first winner of the night, for Special Recognition, was Christine Wallander. Board member Robin Bubarth listed all of Wallander's work with the library and other groups within the community.
The Special Service Group Award was given to South Connellsville Rod and Gun Club, accepted by club President Jeff Conko.
Board member Michael Edwards presented the Community Service Individual Award to Terry Shallenberger for his work with the train canteen and a proposed soccer complex he hopes to bring to Connellsville.
“We don't do this for awards, we do this because it's the right thing to do,” Shallenberger said.
The Beautification awards were presented by board member Bryan Kisiel, who said the awards were for those who have “made outstanding efforts to beautify our community.”
The business awarded a Beautification Award was ArtWorks. The individual awarded a Beautification Award was Sheree Cockrell for her murals she painted on the outside of the ArtWorks building.
The Distinguished Citizen Award went to John Truxel, presented to him by Chamber President Bill Fiesta.
“I'm just happy to be able to represent Connellsville in everything that I do,” Truxel said. “I wouldn't change anything.”
The final award of the evening, the Athena, was presented by former winner Gretchen Mundorff, who was pleased to announce that this year's award winner was her longtime friend, businesswomen and volunteer Lisa Malago. Malago has been involved for years with the Special Olympics.
“I was very surprised,” Malago said. “I am very, very honored and very proud to share the honor of winning this award with all of the women who have received it in the past.”
The dinner was also a celebration of the 25th anniversary of the awarding of the Athena, and 14 of the past winners were in attendance. All were recognized and applauded.
Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Geibel grad dreams big, lands role in second feature film
- Laurel Highlands teacher ‘humbled’ by St. Vincent award
- Couple hope Connellsville shop will attract trail users
- Uniontown Lady Red Raiders softball players playing with heart
- Geibel Catholic ready to hold annual auction
- Connellsville to host job fair
- Fayette judge: Man not competent to stand trial for fatal stabbing
- 3 oppose incumbent GOP Fayette commissioner
- Connellsville, Fayette officials vow to find solution to WCVI building problem
- Unique Connellsville art helps feed needy
- Defense attorney in Connellsville shooting challenges account of officer who resigned while under investigation