Community Award winners gather at the end of Saturday night’s gala at Vern Burton Community Center in Port Angeles. Those recognized were, from left, Eric Lewis, CEO of Olympic Medical Center, which was named Organization of the Year; retired Port Angeles High School music instructor Ron Jones, who was selected as Educator of the Year; Kira Acker, representing Lefties Baseball, which was selected as Emerging Business of the Year; community volunteer Marsha Robin, holding her Citizen of the Year award; Jim Wiedman, manager of the Olympic Peninsula Division of Lakeside Industries, which was named Business of the Year; and community supporter Lindsay Fox, recipient of the Young Leader of the Year award. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Community Award winners gather at the end of Saturday night’s gala at Vern Burton Community Center in Port Angeles. Those recognized were, from left, Eric Lewis, CEO of Olympic Medical Center, which was named Organization of the Year; retired Port Angeles High School music instructor Ron Jones, who was selected as Educator of the Year; Kira Acker, representing Lefties Baseball, which was selected as Emerging Business of the Year; community volunteer Marsha Robin, holding her Citizen of the Year award; Jim Wiedman, manager of the Olympic Peninsula Division of Lakeside Industries, which was named Business of the Year; and community supporter Lindsay Fox, recipient of the Young Leader of the Year award. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Inaugural awards program honors six in Port Angeles

PORT ANGELES — Marsha Robin, who has been described as a volunteer “jack-of-all-trades,” was selected the Citizen of the Year in the inaugural Port Angeles Community Awards presented Saturday night.

Awards in six categories were presented at the Vern Burton Community Center.

Other awards, and the winners, are:

• Business of the Year — Lakeside Industries.

• Educator of the Year — Ron Jones.

• Organization of the Year — Olympic Medical Center.

• Emerging Business of the Year — Port Angeles Lefties.

• Young Leader of the Year — Lindsay Fox.

The event, which included a catered dinner, sold out and was attended by at least 225 people, said incoming chamber board President Robert Utz, general manager of the Red Lion Hotel.

Tim Tucker and Amanda Bacon served as masters of ceremonies. Awards were presented by Publisher Terry Ward and Advertising Manager Steve Perry of the Peninsula Daily News, which was the award sponsor.

Finalists and winners were chosen by a panel of judges — Ed Bedford, Suzie Bennett, Pastor Paul King, Dr. Roger Oaks, Tina Smith O’Hara, Todd Ortloff, Jane Pryne, Christy Smith, Nathan West and Melissa Williams — overseen by Carol Sinton.

Citizen of the Year

Robin, 70, has volunteered with the Soroptimist International Port Angeles Jet Set, the Port Angeles Food Bank, Olympic Peninsula Humane Society and the Port Angeles Dog Park.She has served on the boards of the food bank and Port Angeles Friends of the Library, is a Master Gardener and is involved with the Girl Scouts.Outgoing chamber board President Jessica Hernandez nominated Robin for the Citizen of the Year award.

Hernandez said the Citizen of the Year Award recognized outstanding contributions to promoting a healthy, happy and prosperous community.

Chamber Executive Director Marc Abshire described Robin as a “jack-of-all-trades when it comes to volunteerism.”

Other finalists were Reath Ellefson, and a couple, Amber Keebler and Timothy Mason.

Business of the Year

Lakeside Industries Inc., of Port Angeles won the Business of the Year award for its many contributions through donations and in-kind work.

“Over the years, we’ve been recognized for all sorts of industry awards” but the community award was especially treasured, said Jim Weidman, manager of the Port Angeles office, as he accepted the award.

“We have 80 employees and they all want to make a difference,” he said later. “They are woven into the community.”

The Port Angeles office of Lakeside Industries Inc. has participated in the Olympic Medical Foundation’s Festival of Trees from its inception and was a major supporter of the Quinn Redlin Kintner Memorial Park among the multitude of agencies and events it has supported.

The award was to go to a business that has shown consistent excellence as an employer, involvement as a corporate citizen of the community and been a recognized contributor over the past year, Hernandez said.

Other finalists were Black Ball Ferry Line and Wilder Auto Center.

Educator of the Year

Ron Jones, retired Port Angeles High School director of orchestras — who was selected this year for the Washington Interscholastic Activities Hall of Fame — won the Educator of the Year Award.

“What a great way to end a career,” he said Saturday night.

Among those he thanked were his colleagues Cindy Crumb, Lincoln High School principal, and John Gallagher, Port Angeles High School science teacher and the recipient of the 2017 Regional Teacher of the Year Award. Both were finalists for the award.

“You guys were my mentors,” Jones said.

The Educator of the Year Award recognized a teacher, coach, or educational staff member who exhibited impressive leadership and achieved exceptional results, Hernandez said.

Organization of the Year

Olympic Medical Center won the Organization of the Year Award.

CEO Eric Lewis said it was “quite an honor” as he accepted it.

“Olympic Medical Center now has 1,425 employees and this is really their award,” Lewis said, adding that the nonprofit is owned by the public and “is really your hospital.”

The Organization of the Year award recognized a nonprofit, church, agency or community service organization that has demonstrated exceptional achievement of its mission, consistently improving quality of life in the community over the past year, Hernandez said.

Other finalists were The Answer for Youth (TAFY) and United Way of Clallam County.

Emerging Business of the Year

The Port Angeles Lefties won the Emerging Business of the Year Award.

“Thank you for the support of the Lefties,” said Kira Acker, wife of co-owner Matt Acker, who was out of town Saturday.

“We love being part of the community,” she said.

The Ackers moved to Port Angeles as the inaugural season of the Port Angeles Lefties, a collegiate-level wood-bat summer baseball team, began June 1.

The Emerging Business of the Year award was to be given to a business between one and four years old — or which had been significantly reinvented within that same window of time — that had recently filled a significantly unmet need or market, revitalized an area, or contributed altruistically beyond the mission or profit motive of the business, Hernandez said.

Other finalists were Bada Bean NW and Olympic Peninsula Massage.

Young Leader of the Year

Lindsay Fox, 39, won the Young Leader of the Year Award for a broad range of volunteer activities.

“I do what I do because I love people and I love Port Angeles,” Fox said as she accepted the award.

She referred to the other two finalists, Brianna Kelly and Bonnie Schmidt and said: “I’m in good company.”

In addition to her work as the chamber’s 20-hour-a-week events manager and a 30-hour-a-week executive assistant at J Oppelt Development and General Contracting, Fox serves on the board of the Olympic Medical Center Foundation and the Festival of Trees as well as the Peninsula College Athletics Association fundraising board.

She and her husband, John, are Hurricane Ridge Ski Team coaches.

The Young Leader of the Year award was to recognize a person between the ages of 18 and 39 who exemplifies a commitment to the health and future of the community, and who has made an impact during the past year, Hernandez said.

First Federal was the Platinum Sponsor of the gala and sponsored the after-party.

________

Executive Editor Leah Leach can be reached at 360-417-3530 or at lleach@peninsuladailynews.com.

Marsha Robin, a volunteer and supporter of numerous Clallam County service groups and organizations speaks after being presented the Citizen of the Year award by Terry Ward, publisher of Olympic Peninsula News Group, which includes the Peninsula Daily News, center, and Steve Perry, general manager of the Peninsula Daily News, during Saturday’s Community Awards Gala at Vern Burton Community Center in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Marsha Robin, a volunteer and supporter of numerous Clallam County service groups and organizations speaks after being presented the Citizen of the Year award by Terry Ward, publisher of Olympic Peninsula News Group, which includes the Peninsula Daily News, center, and Steve Perry, general manager of the Peninsula Daily News, during Saturday’s Community Awards Gala at Vern Burton Community Center in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

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