Community contributors recognized for hard work
Gail Farley won the Volunteer of the Year Award this year at the annual meeting of the Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce. (AEBRA COE/NEWS-REVIEW / January 18, 2013)
Winners of several awards were chosen by votes of 228 chamber members, local residents and visitors who responded to an online survey.
Gail Farley won the Volunteer of the Year Award this year. Farley is the driving force behind the Northern Michigan Cancer Crusaders. She also is active with the 4th of July Committee, Mushroom Festival and Relay for Life.
"She is the first person to tell anyone going through a hard time, 'Call me if you need anything,' and she means it," said chamber director Jim Baumann.
The Sally Roselli Business Leadership Award was presented to Becky Harris for her "vigilant and enthusiastic promotion" as the new manager of the Boyne City Farmers Market, according to Baumann.
"Becky was also a vital member of the branding committee that developed a new website, logos and branding for the Main Street program and its projects, including Stroll the Streets, Farmers Market and Boyne Thunder," he said.
Harris also volunteers to help organize the Chef's Challenge and the Kiwanis Classic Car Show in Boyne City.
The Boyne City Eagles won the Community Pride Award for a local organization or non-profit. The organization donates money throughout the year to area food pantries, the Girl and Boy Scouts of America, community Christmas baskets, school backpack programs, the free medical clinic and many other organizations.
Entrepreneur of the Year Award for starting or expanding a business was given to Brett Cuper of Morel's Bistro.
Cuper took a business that had been closed for four years and "turned it into a high-end destination restaurant enhancing Boyne City's growing reputation as the place to go for all types of dining," Baumann said.
Joshua Grove and Michael Koteskey of Boyne Parasail won the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
"This dynamic duo worked for months ahead of time, planning and training to start a business that made a big splash right away, adding to our reputation as a fun and exciting community," the chamber director said.
There were two recipients of the Heritage Award Thursday night. The award recognizes ongoing contributions to the Boyne community by a long-time business leader. Winners were Lynda Christensen and Hugh Conklin.
Christensen is active in the Boyne City Booster Foundation, St. Matthew's Church and she runs the Loan Closet, which loans medical equipment, such as hospital beds, walkers, commodes and shower chairs to those returning home from surgery or who are at home for their final days.
Conklin is director of the Boyne City Main Street Program.
"He would say it is because of all the volunteers, his board, and city and chamber staff," Baumann said about Conklin. "But it is his quiet leadership and passion for the people in Boyne City that produces such wonderful results for our downtown."
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