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On March 2nd the community highlighted our local nonprofits and volunteers at the annual Honoree Awards Celebration at the Elks Lodge. Co-hosted by the Evergreen Chamber and Leadership Evergreen, the event was a sell out. Local restaurants provided the food, and the audience recognized the work that nonprofits do for our town.
Former Senator Gary Hart spoke on the topic of leadership in the national, political arena, but which applies generally across the board. The three components he stressed are: (1) the ability to see over the horizon, farther ahead than most; (2) being able to come up with ideas to address the concerns; (3) being able to communicate how citizens should support those ideas. Leadership means being prepared during times of change and crisis.
Mount Evans Home Health Care & Hospice was named 2016 Nonprofit of the Year for their work in providing health services in our community. Also recognized were the following nominees:
- Evergreen Christian Outreach for their continued services in the area of food bank, jobs center, resale shop and much more.
- AT HOME Evergreen for getting the Emergency Shelter Program up and running.
- Leadership Evergreen for the World’s Longest Picnic table event that netted $12,000 for our local foodbanks.
- Rotary Club of Evergreen for the donation and implementation of the Music Park at the Stagecoach Playground.
- The Evergreen Elks Lodge for the donations their group gives to multiple nonprofits.
- Bootstraps for giving local kids the opportunity to get college scholarships.
- DriveSmart for teaching teen and senior driver safety
- EAS+Y (Evergreen Alliance for Sustainability + You) for the implementation of the second community garden by Wilmot Elementary School.
Wayne Parkinson was named Leader of the Year for his leadership of the board of directors of Staunton State Park south of Conifer. In addition to being largely responsible for raising more than $55,000, Wayne volunteered more than 2,000 hours in a single year. "Through Wayne's passion for the park, his efforts have encouraged generous donors to help raise fund to purchase two Action Trackchairs for the Park," explained nominee Sharon Trilk, making Staunton the very first Accessibility Program of any Colorado State Park.
Winners of the night included:
- 2016 Nonprofit of the Year – Mount Evans Home Healthcare & Hospice
- 2016 Young Professional of the Year-Kristin Ledgerwood, Vivian’s Gourmet
- 2016 Youth of the Year – Natalie Holley, Evergreen High School
- 2016 Ambassador of the Year – Marisa Rodero, Roots Medicine
- 2016 Leader of the Year – Wayne Parkinson
- 2016 Volunteer of the Year – Lori Frease
Chamber announces four scholarships
At the event we also conducted a pass-the-pitcher campaign to raise funds for the Evergreen Chamber College Scholarship Fund. The combination of the spare change in the room equaled $2000! The Chamber vowed to match all donations 100% which equals another $2000. Last, Bootstraps, Inc who administers the scholarship selection will match those two amounts ($4000) at 25%. The Evergreen Chamber is proud to announce that it has collected a total pot of $5000 which will be split into four $1250 scholarships to be awarded to local high school graduates going on to study business.
A surprise conclusion to the occasion came when the Evergreen High School drama department arrived to sing some of the songs from their current show, "Into The Woods." The evening that showcased the things that our community does not for money but for love – an amazing night honoring those who support the needs and services of the Evergreen area.