Algonac officials honored the city’s COVID Community Champions before the Algonac Clay Music in the Parks Bob Marshall Band performance on June 17.
Officials recognized COVID Community Champions this year in place of the city’s annual Citizen and Business of the Year awards.
“Earlier this year, Algonac sought nominations to honor COVID Community Champions — the citizens, businesses, friends, neighbors and organizations that came together to support our community during the pandemic,” City Manager Denice Gerstenberg said.
The nominees received an invitation to meet at Riverfront Park at 6:15 p.m. There were about 25 nominees and about 50 people recognized, as some were part of a group that was nominated. About 300 people were in the audience.
“Mayor Terry Stoneburner hosted the event, introducing each nominee and recognizing their contribution to the community,” Gerstenberg said. “Each nominee received a certificate of recognition and was congratulated by members of the city council — Councilman Corey Blair, Councilman Rocky Gillis, Councilwoman Cathy Harris and Councilman Ray Martin. Each nominee also received coupons for themselves and their family members to enjoy an ice cream from Ice Box Novelties.”
Additionally, each nominee received a box of forget-me-not flower seeds with a note that said, “The Difference You Make Will Not Be Forgotten.”
There were many individual nominees, including Amy Amiels of Amiels Enterprises, for helping organize and distribute food, clothes and toys to less fortunate families; Chris Amiels, for helping neighbors and donating supplies and services to the community; Dr. Megan Bradford at Algonac Chiropractic Family Wellness Center, for helping nonprofits and donating time and money when needed; Ed Carter, for donating time to help others; Fire Chief Joe Doan, for supporting and helping the community; Jane Eglinton, for assisting senior citizens and others in providing information regarding COVID-19, immunization sites, mask wearing and getting vaccinated; Shelby Ezzo, of Tutoring with Ms. Shelby, for helping many kids with tutoring; Gillis, for donating his time, supplies and heart to deliver services in the community; Karen and Keith Green, of Henry’s Club, for delivering food to those in need and helping neighbors and local businesses; Jan Montville, for fundraising efforts for Goodfellows; Laura Sebastian, for cooking and delivering meals for residents, and Pastor Dan Stewart, of Woodside Bible Church, for planning the Christmas nativity, food giveaways and leading the community.
Several people were nominated for making masks for the community, including Mary Adkins, Wendy Meldrum, Kathy Poole and Lori Suarez.
Group nominees included the Algonac Fire Department, for hosting birthday celebrations; the Algonac Lions Club, for its holiday toy drive; Amiels Enterprises, for donating time and money to community organizations; Community First Health Centers, for providing health services and sponsoring mobile food pantries, and Henry’s Club, for its holiday toy drive.
Several people were nominated more than once, including Sue Colgrove, of Safe Ride Sue, for providing transportation; Sue DeLange and Jan Evans of the Piece to Peace Quilters, for overseeing a project of making and distributing masks, as well as collaborating with many groups, and Keith Green, for donating time to the community at local food and toy drives and delivering food.
Cheryl Taylor, who had the idea for the Blessing Boxes recently installed in Algonac, was nominated nine times.
“Cheryl has gone above and beyond to help inspire and build community, even though personal health struggles,” Sarah Amor wrote in her nomination. “She’s a constant light in times of frustration. From the Blessing Boxes, to help feed neighbors, to encouraging words, to being a delivery driver for those in need. She’s the best.”
Gerstenberg said that the nominees were “surprised and grateful.”
“Many nominees were behind the scenes people who are not accustomed to public recognition,” she said.
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