Feb. 12, 2020 — Tonight’s Siuslaw Awards recognizes not only outstanding business leaders in the Siuslaw region, but the stand-out volunteers from 2019 who keep Florence Oregon’s premier coastal community. With the Florence First Citizen Award and the Future First Citizen Award, the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce will celebrate these eight special nominees.
First Citizen Nominees
Look over the variety of volunteer work, specialties, passion projects and skills of the four nominees for First Citizen, and there won’t be a lot of similarities. What unites these men is a dedication to the Siuslaw community and its residents.
Siuslaw Elementary School Principal
Who else knows every Siuslaw Elementary student by name, and their parents as well? Besides working with and supporting the area’s youth, Mike gives of his time outside the school day to numerous family-related causes. His volunteer presence with local organizations proves his dedication is beyond just his job requirements. Mike’s impact on the community is evident every day, inside and outside of Siuslaw School District.
Dr. Brian Holmes
Florence Dental Clinic
For over 20 years, Brian has been a leader, collaborator and supporter of Florence and the surrounding community. In 2001, he started the mobile dental clinic to provide treatment for children who don’t have access to dental care. He has donated thousands of hours and financial support to helping the youth and disadvantaged populations on the Oregon coast and in communities worldwide through his dental practice. He and his team are on a humanitarian dental service mission in Grenada.
Siuslaw High School
In the Siuslaw School District, there is no other volunteer more valuable and possibly more giving of their time and energy than Bob. Bob puts in more hours than is required by a full-time district staff member because he is passionate about helping students find success. He works with the ASPIRE program in both Siuslaw and Mapleton to connect youth with educational opportunities. He is leading the Siuslaw Education Expo on Feb. 29 and is a Dunes City Councilor.
Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue
Jerry has been involved in the community for many years. His strong work ethic was the reason he was voted VFW Firefighter of the Year. Always willing to help others, Jerry will answer the call to help anyone who is in need in our community. In 2017, Operations Chief Jim Dickerson said, “Our department is built on volunteers, and Jerry exemplifies volunteer firefighters. Whether it be emergency response or whatever needs to be volunteered, Jerry is always there.”
Future First Citizen Nominees
Siuslaw High School nominated four seniors for this year’s Future First Citizen Award.
“I’m super excited for the group this year. I know I say that every year, and I mean it this time — and every time,” said Siuslaw High School Counselor Steve Moser. “What amazing students we have here.”
In his nomination packets, Moser described each of the following nominees and their strengths.
Her transcript is nothing but As, which is amazing considering how many college level classes Tiffany has taken. She has already been accepted to the Honors College at Oregon State University for pharmacology. With multiple college level courses completed and with many volunteer experiences behind her, Tiffany has the knowledge and skills required to achieve her goals. With her intelligence and a strong work ethic, her potential is limitless.
Brendon is supportive of his teammates, is encouraging and has a work ethic that is second to none. An Eagle Scout, volunteer, athlete and a great student, he gives of his time and energy in many areas. “Why wouldn’t I do my best? Isn’t that what you’re supposed to do?” That’s what separates him from his peers and what has allowed him to achieve success in school, as an athlete and as a person.
Jared is intelligent to a level rarely seen in a high school student. When he speaks, his peers listen. Not only because he is smart, but because he is humble and genuinely cares for others. Helping others is what Jared hopes to do in the future, as he looks to attend MIT for its mobility and experimental mechanics opportunities. Jared leads when no one will stand up, but can also follow when needed.
High achieving academic accomplishments, or incredible athletic success? Why not both? That’s exactly what Hannah has done, and to extreme levels. She has over a 4.0 and is a multiple state championship athlete student. She also is a member of multiple service clubs and volunteers in the community. Hannah has shown that nothing is outside her reach. So, high achieving academics or athletic success? She can simply reply, “Yes.”
“These students must have done something right if they’re receiving a nomination for Future First Citizen,” Moser said.
A panel of judges determined winners of the citizen and business awards, which will be announced at the Siuslaw Awards on Feb. 12 at the Florence Events Center.
Florence Chamber Events Coordinator Mitzi Hathaway said, “We congratulate all the nominees for your kindness, caring, creativity, innovation, dedication and commitment. You continue to make the Florence Area a special place to conduct business and to live.”
The 2019 Siuslaw Awards begins at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12, at Florence Events Center, 715 Quince St. For more information, visit FlorenceChamber.com.