Voces Unidas Hosts 5th Annual Banquet

Featured Speaker, Michael Bowman

Gerry Jenkins with Rene Gonzales

John Maxwell, the director of the Compassion Center in Lamar received the Voces Unidas Citizenship award during the 5th annual banquet at the Lamar Eagles Lodge this past Saturday, October 15. Maxwell has been in charge of the Compassion Center at 710 West Olive Street since March of this year. Maxwell thanked the diversity oriented organization and stressed the need to work to end hunger for Lamar’s school students. He noted that we are a wasteful society, judging from the amount of usable refuse we throw away each day, and added that he hoped the community can continue to find ways to band together to assist our neighbors in need.

Others recognized by the Voces Unidas committee members included Suzie Lira winning the Professional Category award, Lira is a Lamar High School senior, who among other accomplishments, was voted DECA state president. Cub Scout Pack 218 and Boy Scout Pack 223 were included in the Organization Awards, with specific mention going to Greg Ludwig and Shane Dashner, for the roles they’ve played in both groups, building additional members and urging those youngsters to work to support their organizations and scouting in general in the area. It was noted that popcorn sales had climbed almost eightfold in the past several years, and the scouts earn 30% of their sales to support their activities.

The featured speaker of the evening was former state senate candidate, Michael Bowman, now an Independent Strategic Advisor. Bowman updated efforts on the 25-25 Renewable Energy Campaign for Colorado, adding there are now 1,200 different organizations working to achieve greater sources of renewable energy in the state. Bowman also spoke to how rural communities such as Lamar can prosper by finding niche markets along the Front Range in Colorado. “We’re not going to see much support from the federal level. Washington is fundamentally broken,” he told the gathering, stressing the need for smaller communities to band together to develop their own resources.  He offered Lincoln county’s new wind farm as an example of rural communities capitalizing on their resources to a Front Range market.

Shane Dashner hosted the evening festivities which included remarks from outgoing Chairperson Rene Gonzales and incoming Chairperson, Gerry Jenkins. Other committee leadership members include Kirk Crespin as Vice-Chair, Angela Chairez as Secretary, Brenda Estrada as Treasurer and Denise Estep continuing her role as Historian.

By Russ Baldwin


Filed Under: BusinessChamber/Local BusinesscommunityEconomyEventsLamarPolitics


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