Four citizens were honored for their service to the community during the Lamar Chamber of Commerce’s 2016 Annual Meeting and Banquet held at the Wolves Den Event Center Thursday, January 28th. The annual meeting served to introduce incoming and outgoing chamber directors for 2015/2016.
Clay Peacock was honored as Citizen of the Year as Ian Blacker of the Lamar Christian Church provided the introductory remarks, which were humorously brief and direct. There were about ten members of Clay Peacock’s family in the audience who shared the moment with him. Doug Harbour, last year’s recipient, remarked about Clay’s work on behalf of local and national veterans, through his leadership in Wreathes Across America and his annual, local, holiday efforts to provide Christmas stockings to several hundred overseas service people.
The Humanitarian Award is not an annual presentation, but is bestowed upon those citizens who have made a major impact on the quality of life for Lamar’s residents. This year, that award was presented posthumously to Jillian Tinnes for her exceptional work in fund raising efforts for the Lamar Area Hospice and heightening awareness of breast cancer in our community. The award, as well as reading numerous nominating letters from friends and family members, was presented by Chana Reed to Jill’s daughter, Haven, with a host of family members, friends and associates in attendance, as well as a representation from the Lamar Area Hospice.
A new award was introduced during the annual banquet. Named the Organization/Business Award, it was created to recognize the efforts on behalf of the community by a non-profit or commercial enterprise. Emily Nieschburg, the executive director of Healthy Places, accepted the award on behalf of the organization which has been instrumental in fostering awareness of the need for physical activity outlets in the Lamar community for the past several years. Healthy Places has garnered as much as $4 million in various grants to that end, and helped qualify Lamar for a potential single, $5 million grant which is expected to be awarded later this year. The Honker of the Year award went to member Vic Coberly for his contributions to the chamber group which serves as a public relations committee, welcoming new businesses to the Lamar community and highlighting any related developments such as business expansion or changes in business ownership.
Chamber board members selected five new members for the year, replacing one member who resigned and four others whose terms had expired. The new president is Vickie Dykes and Ginger Coberly will serve as vice-president. Lisa Thomas will serve as secretary and Michelle Crown as treasurer.
The departing board members are President, Kynlee Emick, Sherry Walls, Denise Carder, Danin Myers and Patty Masias. The new members who were officially introduced to the community during the banquet are Paul VanHorn, Cassandra Looper, Theron Hammer, Kayla Tefertiller and Julian Casteneda.
Kynlee Emick praised the efforts of her chamber directors for their commitment during past year. She highlighted some of the more notable events the chamber hosted including the Farm-City Banquet which featured recording artist Michael Martin Murphey, the annual Academic Awards Banquet, as well as the expanding attendance for Lamar Days, Oktoberfest and other seasonal events. Emick also took note of the contributions from Lisa Carder, chamber manager.
Incoming president, Vickie Dykes, noted that she has been a resident for only ten years, but from the outset, noted the warmth and congeniality of the Lamar residents from her first year in the community. She recapped some of the more recognizable features of the town, from the rolling hills to numerous family-friendly events throughout the year. Dykes stressed the need for local community involvement for current and future events which can help make Lamar more economically viable in the years to come.
By Russ Baldwin
If you would like to read the letters that were submitted for Humanitarian and Citizen of the Year, Click Here!
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