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Military Coalition Named Citizen of the Year at 2017 Annual Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce Banquet

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The Hopkins County Military Coalition was named 2016 Hopkins County Citizen of the Year and Linda Galligher was named Hopkins County Woman of the Year for 2016 during “An Evening in the Woods” Dinner and Community Awards Thursday night. It was the Annual Chamber of Commerce Banquet.

In naming the Military Coalition Citizen of the Year, last year’s winners Markeda Fisher and Kayla Price Mitchell pointed out that they are the first to be named to the honor that is traditionally given to individuals. The sisters said the Coalition honors veterans in many ways including military funerals for those who served the nation. They serve many organizations and groups by providing color guard presentations and other service activities. The Military Coalition served as color guard for the Chamber event Thursday night.

Linda Galligher was called a person of faith, service, commitment, and love by Sheila Boyd, who represented Beta Sigma Phi. Mrs. Galligher has been involved in banking as a profession and as a volunteer has been a participant and promoter of United Way, Relay for Life, Chicks for Charity, MADD, Special Olympics, Grace Family Church, and many other organizations.

Rowena Johnson, Principal at Lamar Primary School, was named Educator of the Year. Mrs. Johnson has been an education professional for 47 years in the Sulphur Springs ISD. Jessica Kultgen, with the Chamber, noted her commitment, dedication, and service to children. Her motto, “If it is to be, it’s up to me” and her determination to achieve her Master’s Degree during a battle with cancer were presented as factors in creating the course of her life and work.

Christine Morris was named Caregiver of the Year by the Pilot Club. Mrs. Morris faithfully cared for her mother, Corine Snow, who recently died at the age of 112. Mrs. Morris made personal sacrifices, including putting off her own health care to care for her mother.

Agriculturalist of the Year was presented to Pat Chase, who for the past 10 years has raised, trained, and breed Belgian horses in Hopkins County and has registered more Belgian horses than any other in Texas. Chase has been involved in farming in the county for many years having had a dairy and currently raising the horses and producing small bale hay. The award was presented by Gary Spraggins with the Professional Ag Workers of Hopkins County. Chase stated that agriculture has played a dominate role in making Hopkins County what it is today.

Sandy Wallace and Plain and Fancy have been on the Downtown Square for 20 years and continued to serve the public throughout the many changes that have taken place in the development of the area according to Judy Heilman, who represented the Sulphur Springs Downtown Business Alliance. Plain and Fancy received the Growth and Renewal Award.

Ambassador of the Year for 2016 is Kim Beck. Beck was honored for her diligent and joyful spirit.

Amanda Thompson Brandenburgh and Shining Star Productions was presented the Community Pride Award by County Judge Robert Newsom, a member of the 1994 Adult Leadership Class. Newsom pointed out their efforts to bring a variety of theatrical productions produced with local talent.

The Vision Award was presented to the Bobby McDonald family and renamed to honor McDonald for his vision for the community and its future.

Suputo Foods was named Large Business of the Year by last year’s winner Joe Don Pogue with Sulphur Springs Livestock and Dairy Auction. Pogue noted the history of the company and its current productivity and influence in the community.

Channel 18 Television was named Small Business of the Year. Chuck Sickles, with the Chamber of Commerce, noted the local programming produced and aired by the Suddenlink access channel owned and operated by KSST.

The chamber featured the High School Leadership Class in a video produced by the Sulphur Springs High School audio visual students.

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Author: Staff Reporter

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