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Ardith Prendergast, left, and Kathleen Grady-Weil tabulate the silent auction winners Friday night at the 2018 Citrus County Chamber Pillars Awards Banquet held at Black Diamond Ranch.

With peace and love, the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce will host their annual Pillar Awards to recognize influential individuals, organizations and businesses in the community. This year’s theme is “Peace, Love, & Pillar,” a ’60s themed event.

The majority of the annual awards are named for community members who had a positive impact on Citrus County during their lifetime. The chamber will present recipients with the following:

  • Service Above & Beyond Award: given to an individual who has exhibited exemplary service to their community
  • Jean Grant Business Women’s Alliance (BWA) Award: given to a BWA member who is dedicated to serving their organization and the community
  • Altrusa of Citrus County Mamie L. Bass Award: given to an individual who sets exemplifies excellence in character, business and citizenship
  • Philip P. Royal First Responders Award: given to a first responder who exemplifies their profession and is dedicated to service of the community
  • John T. Barnes Outstanding Community Organization Award: given to a nonprofit organization that has consistently contributed to Citrus County over the years
  • Past Chair: given to the past chair of the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce
  • Ambassador of the Year Award: given to someone who has shown exemplary service to their organization and chamber members
  • Shawn Harrison Outstanding Youth Service Award: given to a youth who has shown outstanding volunteer service in Citrus County
  • Lillian Smith Leadership Citrus Award: given to a Leadership Citrus member who has shown outstanding leadership within their organization and the community
  • Mandi Warren Richards Rising Star Award: given to a young professional who has made a significant impact on the community and is on the path to become a lifelong leader
  • Mike Scott Community Service Award: given to an adult who has made a significant contribution to Citrus County’s youths
  • Walt Connors Small Business Award: given to a well-established business that has significantly impacted the quality of business in Citrus County
  • Rick Quinn Distinguished Citizen Award: given to a deserving “low profile” leader who exemplifies the ideals of community volunteerism in everyday life
  • Charles B. Fitzpatrick Heritage Award: given to an individual who has significantly impacted the quality of life in Citrus County with a lifetime of community service and involvement
  • Outstanding Chamber Member — President’s Award: given to a chamber member who has gone above and beyond to serve Citrus County’s business community

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This year, the chamber will present a Lifetime Achievement Award.

“The Lifetime Achievement Award is a very special recognition that is not presented every year,” said Ardath Prendergast, chamber vice president. “It was created by the chamber as a means to give singular honor to an individual that has had a tremendous impact over the years on the quality of life in Citrus County, whether through volunteerism, citizen activism, governmental service or perhaps a longstanding business.”

Although event tickets are all sold out, the public can bid on silent auction items at tinyurl.com/hxhwkpby. All items were donated by local businesses and individuals in support of the chamber. There will also be a live auction for attendees at the event. 

Hannah is a reporter for the Chronicle. She can be reached at 352-564-2929 or email hannah.sachewicz@chronicleonline.com.

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