by Steve Peterson
Cathie Brown and Gary Tucker were probably the two most surprised people at the Hawarden Chamber of Commerce’s 12th Annual Banquet Jan. 12.
Brown, the Chamber’s director and Tucker, the city of Hawarden administrator, won the President’s Recognition Award given by Chamber of Commerce President Travis Olson. Brown has worked for the Chamber since 2003; Tucker for the city since 2009 and both said they were surprised by the honor.
“Gary Tucker has given tirelessly and devoted hard work and dedication to this Chamber in assisting in any way he is needed. Gary has taken a large role this year in helping the economic development committee and acting in many cases as an economic development director. Through his dedication to the city and his passion to see it grow, it is hard to think of someone that encompasses the heart of the Chamber for this honor.
“Cathie has been with the Chamber since 2003 and if you know anything about her work ethic, you know that she is not the type of person to just punch a time clock. Yes, she has a job description of what her day-to-day tasks are, but it is what she does outside of that which makes her such a deserving individual.
“I told Gary that Cathie Brown was receiving this award, and Cathie thought Gary was receiving it. So they both are receiving the award,” said Olson.
“Getting Cathie to actually take a day off, she feels she will miss something and not be available to everyone. At the end of the day, I could not think of two more deserving individuals that encompass the mission of the Chamber to move the city and the Chamber forward,” said Olson.
Joel and Deb Fluit, who led last year’s 125th Hawarden City Celebration in 2012, won special recognition from Carol Frerichs.
Longevity awards went to individuals and groups.
One group included 16 employees of Coilcraft Inc. of Hawarden, who have given 20 to 25 years of service. They are: Jerry Klemme, Rick Deboom, Randy Ballard, Sandy Fickbohm, Roger Obbink, Lonny Myers, Deb Huenink, Jo Ann Toben, Jenell Lanning, Be Nguyen, Jaylene Topete, Arnie Lundstrom, Tim McKenney, Ben Robertson, Chris Lewis, and Jean Bertram.
Hawarden Public Library Board of Trustees President Tony Lauters honored Library Director Val Haverhals for her 30 years of service.
“We are here to acknowledge the 30 years of service that Haverhals has put forth for the entire community. Everything from the building being added on to and the old system, and I think back to the 1982 when it started. I was still checking out books the old fashioned way, writing it on a card and checking with the librarian. Changes that Val has gone through, now we lease the majority of our books; we download our books; the technology she works with is such a tremendous force. She continues to have that forward-looking thought and trying to help our community be life-long learners.
“It is with a great deal of tremendous support for Val and for our entire community that we say, ‘Thanks, Val’,” said Lauters.
First State Bank President Don Nolan presented staffer Judy Klemme with recognition for her dedicated service as she is retiring.
The banquet at Hawarden Community Center included Cornie Schelling winning the 2012 Citizen of the Year Award. Last year’s winner, Charlene Lill presented Shelling. She said Schelling, who is retired from LG Everist, enjoys volunteering and working at the grounds of Calliope Village. Calliope Village is a collection of buildings showing life in the 19th Century as a Sioux County seat. It is open during the summer.
“He is there every day in the summer, painting and working on the flowers. He really enjoys it,” said Schelling’s daughter, Bonnie Jurrens.
Also announced was the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors for 2013. Olson will be president; Dan Cain will lead the Development Committee; Michelle Klocke will be a Development Committee member-at-large; Carol Frerichs and Mary Jensen will co-chair the Organization Committee; Dan Hamik will be co-chair of the Retail Events Committee.
The guest speaker for the event was Holly Hoffman who participated in the “Survivor” reality TV show’s Nicaragua season and gave an inspirational talk that ended with a standing ovation.
Pro Sport Bistro served the prime rib dinner and West Sioux’s FFA members assisted.