A popular highlight of the City’s annual State of the City Address is the Community Awards Program. Each year, the City receives an impressive slate of nominations for the five categories, highlighting the many individuals, civic groups and businesses that are dedicated to making UA the best it can be.
The 2018 Community Awards program was no different, and we are proud to share details of this year’s winners and to acknowledge all who were nominated for these prestigious awards.
Business – Colin’s Coffee
Colin serves more than coffee. He serves others. It’s often said that Colin’s Coffee is like the TV bar “Cheers” without the beer. Few know, though, what happens behind the scenes and how big Colin’s heart is. Both the Heart to Heart Food Pantry of First Community Church and Sam’s Fan get his unquestionable support. Each year he has a food drive in support of Heart to Heart. Similarly, he hosts an annual kickoff event for Sam’s Fans, where they raise money and get people to sign up for their charity events.
He frequently opens his coffee shop for organizations as fundraisers and to the community for important gatherings. There have been book signings for local authors, meetings for supporting school levies, meet and greets for local political candidates, Moms Groups, medical support groups, and a multitude of others. In the spring, girl scouts sell cookies in front of his shop and every fall, boy scouts sell popcorn. Each Christmas he turns his coffee shop over to another family. Every cent they make that day goes straight to a local family who needs help over the holidays. Colin shows up at the end of the day to clean up and mop the floors.
Our congratulations to the following nominees: Carsonie’s, Columbus Temperature Control, Kristin E. Devor, D.O., Framing Center at Kingsdale, Fresh Crafts Gallery, Northwest Eyecare Professionals
Community Enrichment – Centennial Task Force – Steering Committee: Rich Simpson, Erik Yassenoff,
Charlie Groezinger, Kip Greenhill, Michele Hoyle,
Debbie McLaughlin, Emma Speight, Jared Nyhart
Planning and implementing Upper Arlington’s Centennial Year celebrations was made possible thanks to the hard work and inspiration of a dedicated team of volunteers and community organizations. The Centennial Task Force first got to work in 2014, and over the many months that followed task force members were able to take their ideas from initial concepts to final projects and events that made 2018 a year to remember. Projects include the Centennial Legacy Project at Northam Park, the Centennial Magazine, Centennial Merchandise and the updated UA history book courtesy of the Historical Society to name a few. Beyond the Steering Committee, the work of the Task Force was made possible by members of City Council, City Staff, the UA Library, UA Schools, UA Historical Society, UA Civic Association, the UA and Tri-Village Rotary Clubs, the UA Community Foundation, Senior Advisory Council, UA Education Foundation, Cultural Arts Commission, the Kiwanis Club of Northwest Columbus, and many more. It was truly a year of community celebration, made possible by the community.
Our congratulations to the following nominees: Steve Anderson, Jennifer Faure, Northwest Kiwanis Soccer Buddies–Mike Toomey, Seeds of Hope Community Garden–Bob Tannehill, “Xercise group at the UA Senior Center, led by volunteer Dorothy Vojvodich
Community Safety – School Resource Office Jon Rice
Officer Rice is a dedicated school resource officer concerned with the safety and well-being of the students in our schools. As a police officer, he is all too aware of the challenges facing students and families when it comes to substance use and abuse. As a father, Police Officer, the High School Resource Officer, Stand Project Board member and advisor for The Stand Project Student group, Officer Rice demonstrates a unique combination of empathy, understanding and accountability.
As a board member for the Stand Project — the Upper Arlington Community Coalition to prevent substance abuse — Officer Rice is a subject matter expert on the law and a tireless advocate for students. He understood that we must reach more young people, raise awareness and offer substance free activities and took on the challenge of starting the Stand Project Student group on his own time. In the spring of 2018 – with guidance from Officer Rice and Syntero Counseling – The Stand Project High School Students were trained to go into the Middle Schools to share with younger students the challenges and solutions surrounding substance use and abuse.
Our congratulations to the following nominees: Sergeant Heather Galli, Charles Reed, Alison Scott
Senior – Judy Dixon Jenks
Judy shares her skills as a volunteer at the Senior Center. She served two terms on the Senior Advisory Council, assists with the UA Senior Association Financial Audit and serves as a weekly volunteer in Café UA. In the community, Judy has been the treasurer of the Public Employee Retirement, Inc., Riverside Hospital Family Practice Patient Advisory Council, Philanthropic Education Organization President and a member of Daughters of the American Revolution.”
Youth Award – The “Take Off” Event – Claire Geistfeld, Maria Buffer, Katie Overmyer
Maria, Claire and Katie created “Take Off” – an event focused on empowering girls in 5th through 7th grades. They wanted to give girls a chance to “take off their make-up, take off the fakeness, take off the act, and take off on their personal journeys.” The three believe that navigating teenage years can be a challenge and wanted to create an evening where girls could celebrate being unique, feel confident, special and valued. The three planned all the event details, secured grant monies and were able to attract a featured speaker, former Olympian and OSU basketball star, Katie Smith.
In addition to organizing this event, these three girls are leaders at Hastings Middle School – my alma mater – as well, involved in the Hasting BEARS group which focuses on kindness, and the Best Buddies Program pairing up with students in the multiple handicap program. All three are excellent students, involved with the music and drama program, active in their church youth group, and involved in student government.
Our congratulations to the following nominees: The Stand Project Student Group, The UA Idea Day Planning Team, Taylor Wilson