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Annual Chamber award winners named

Feb 23, 2012 - By Joshua Scheer Staff Writer

On March 9, the Riverton Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual banquet and awards ceremony to recognize standout businesses and community members.

The event begins at 6 p.m. at the Riverton Eagles Hall at the intersection North Broadway and East Fremont in downtown Riverton.

The awards portion of the evening is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. and will start with a recognition of past chamber board members, Davis said.

A dinner of beef brisket, stuffed salmon and more by The Caterers will be supplemented by a cash bar.

Tickets are $20 each, and RSVPs are required by March 2. To make a reservation, call the chamber at 856-4801.

Each year a board of past chamber presidents selects honorees in seven categories, said chamber manager Jim Davis. Nominees are submitted to the chamber by members of the public.

"Those people all have ... gone beyond the call of duty," Davis said. "They don't do it to look for awards," he added about their community support.

Not all winners are required to be chamber members.

McFarland honored

This year's Lifetime Service award will be presented to Central Wyoming College president Jo Anne McFarland.

"Jo Anne has spent most of her career at CWC," states her nomination form.

The nomination gave a detailed account of her tenure at the college, including programs and partnerships that have grown under her supervision.

"CWC has grown significantly under McFarland's watch, which has significantly benefited Riverton and Fremont County," the form states.

Back on the Rack

The Business of the Year award will be presented to Patty O'Connor for her downtown store, Back on the Rack.

"Back on the Rack fulfills the needs of customers to purchase quality clothing at a reasonable price," states the nomination form. "The business is serving more than just Riverton. ... Her ongoing success is what makes Patty a great business owner."

Bealls

Rookie of the Year will go to Bealls, which opened in September, occupying a portion of the long-abandoned Alco store building in west Riverton. Store officials reported a strong holiday sales season.

Citizen of the Year

Riverton Rotary president Jonathan Faubion was chosen as Citizen of the Year.

"If you ask Jon why community service is important you'll receive the following response, 'It just makes sense. There's no point in being part of the community if you're not willing to serve and improve it,'" states the nomination.

Help for Health

The Community Service award will be presented to Help for Health, which Davis called a "no brainer."

Help for Health's nominator identifies his or her self as a University of Wyoming Master of Social Work student.

"I have been lucky and honored to be a part of such a giving community and agency these past two years and hope that Help for Health will be a deserving recipient and nominee for this award," the nominator wrote.

Hughes

The award for what Davis called "outstanding support of the chamber," Chamber Service award, will go to Gay Hughes.

"Gay Hughes has led the Key Club at the Riverton High School for many years," the nomination form states.

"Her commitment to groom our youth into leaders of tomorrow is apparent by her exemplary leadership, passion and commitment to serve the community."

Brunton

Brunton Outdoor Group will receive the Industrial Achievement recognition.

The company's nomination form states it is moving some manufacturing from China back its Riverton headquarters and manufacturing center in the Central Wyoming College Industrial Park.

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