A night of steak dinners and crystal stars highlighted the East Lee County Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards Gala Saturday on the Plantation Golf and Nation Membership, marking the chambers 58th anniversary and honoring lecturers and public servants for his or her group contributions throughout final 12 months’s pandemic. The gala additionally acknowledged the chamber’s success as it really works to understand a post-pandemic future as a South West Florida presence.
What started because the sprawling Fortunate Lee Cattle ranch of the Fifties has now developed right into a viable civic, social and financial gateway to the world’s future, officers mentioned.
“This 12 months’s award,” mentioned Michael Welch, Chamber chairman of the board, takes the “form of a crystal star.”
“That’s what each trainer right here is,” Welch mentioned, “a crystal star.”
About 130 folks attended the nineteenth annual Gala that included a silent public sale, dinner, leisure and the awards displays honoring space lecturers and others equivalent to firefighters, deputies, municipal, group and chamber members whose contributions have helped to understand the gala’s theme, “The Future is Right here.”
“The longer term is right here,” mentioned Nancy Williamson, gala chair. “We’re so over the entire COVID factor.”
“We’re prepared to start out over and begin transferring ahead.” she mentioned.
Throughout his remarks, Welch mentioned lecturers had been honored for his or her excellent contributions to their college students, faculties and group. What stood out throughout their nomination course of, Welch mentioned, was the re-occurrence of phrases equivalent to inspiration, management, knowledge, friendship and love.
“What got here to us was that our lecturers, public servants (and others), all practiced one thing referred to as the little method,” Welch mentioned, based mostly upon the apply of the late nineteenth century nun.St. Thérèse of Lisieux.
“The little method,” Welch mentioned, “is that the worth of life doesn’t depend on the place we occupy. It relies upon upon the best way we occupy that life in that place.”
On the gala, the 14 lecturers and their respective faculties displayed the vary, depth and educational outreach of East Lee County training whether or not Harnes Marsh Elementary, Lehigh Senior Excessive College, Donna J. Beasley Technical Academy or Veterans Park Academy for the Arts.
“I like my college students,” mentioned Samantha Stafford, Harnes Marsh Elementary trainer.
“I really feel very honored they might select our faculty and assist our college students,” she mentioned. “In any case, it takes a village to boost a baby and we want all of the love we will get.”
Previously often known as the Higher Lehigh Acres Chamber of Commerce, the group was based in 1962, and have become a non revenue in 1980. Nearly two years in the past, the title and emblem was modified to mirror its regional progress with about 200 members because it has expanded into the Gateway Neighborhood and extra of East Fort Myers, officers mentioned.
“What makes a terrific chamber of commerce, is to get extra concerned with the group, the folks,” mentioned Robert Lambert, a Donna J. Beasley Technical Academy trainer and former chamber member.
“Enterprise is sweet. It brings cash in however you’ve obtained to get the folks collectively,” he mentioned. “Folks make group. Folks make enterprise. Folks is the place it’s at.”
Reflecting the areas’ modifications and progress, the chamber put in on the gala three new board members: Lee County Commissioner Cecil Pendergrass, Collier County Commissioner Burt Saunders, and Ruth Anglickis, group chief and pioneer within the improvement of Lehigh Acres. The three had been chosen for the information and experience in serving to understand the chambers mission to “promote and advance the financial, civic, and social progress of East Lee County.”
“I hope everybody right here tonight will be a part of me in an I Care Program,” mentioned Anglickis, president of Landex Resorts Worldwide. “I care about East Lee County. I care in regards to the faculties and the youngsters and group. I care in regards to the individuals who make Lehigh a spot the place a handshake is a long-lasting friendship.”
TEACHERS OF THE YEAR
1. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Harnes Marsh Elementary College
2. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Donna J. Beasley Technical Academy
3. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Sunshine Elementary College
4. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Harnes Marsh Center College
5. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
East Lee Excessive College
6. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Lehigh Senior Excessive College
7. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
8. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Lehigh Acres Center College
9. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Mirror Lakes Elementary College
10. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Lehigh Acres Elementary College
11. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Tortuga Protect Elementary College
12. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
G. Weaver Hipps Elementary College
13 TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Varsity Lakes Center College
14. TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Veterans Park Academy for the Arts
15. LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER OF THE YEAR
Deputy Alexandria Davis
Lee County Sheriff’s Workplace
16. FIRE FIGHTER OF THE YEAR
Lehigh Acres Fireplace Management & Rescue District
17. EMPLOYEE PERFORMANCE AWARD
Lehigh Acres Fireplace Management & Rescue District
18. MEMBER OF THE YEAR
Go Small Biz/LegalSheild
19. CHAIRMAN’S AWARD
Kostyk Insurance coverage Company