Ten Maumee residents to be honored for serviceWritten by Sarah Ottney | Managing Editor | firstname.lastname@example.org
Ten Maumee residents will be honored for their service at the 36th annual Hometown Hero Awards banquet set for March 16.
Local architect Huber Buehrer of Buehrer Group Architecture & Engineering was selected for the top honor, 2010 Outstanding Citizen of the Year.
The award goes to an individual who has “consistently given of his or her time and talent to make the community a better place to live,” according to the nomination form.
“It’s very nice,” said Buehrer, who recently celebrated his 84th birthday. “I like Maumee and so I’ll do whatever I can for Maumee.”
The event will start at 6 p.m. at The Pinnacle, 1772 Indian Wood Circle, in Maumee. Tickets are $30, which includes a meal. There will be a cash bar.
The event usually draws between 200 and 300 people, said Brenda Clixby, director of the Maumee Chamber of Commerce.
“There’s so many people out there; it’s just a matter of finding them,” Clixby said. “Originally just one person got an award, but it was expanded so we could honor more than one at a time.”
Buehrer, who is also involved with Maumee Rotary Club, Toledo Jaycees, Habitat for Humanity and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, designed many of Maumee’s buildings, including the current Maumee High School, Fairfield Elementary School, Maumee Fire Station No. 2, Maumee Senior Center and the Maumee Branch library expansion project.
Receiving Hometown Hero Awards will be Ben Driver, Herbert “Herbie” Moore and Judge Gary Byers.
Driver, a Sohio and BP construction and maintenance worker, is a “Maumee diplomat” who can usually be found helping neighbors plow driveways or do home repairs, delivering baked goods or just saying hello on the street, according to his nomination form.
Moore is coordinator of the Maumee Police Citizen Police Academy volunteer group and helps organize volunteers at parades, fireworks displays, fairs, DUI checkpoints and more.
Byers mentors new judges and is involved with numerous community organizations, including Sunshine Children’s Home, Maumee Kiwanis Club and Maumee Chamber of Commerce. He volunteers weekly at a local elementary school and also started a children’s bicycle helmet safety incentive program, a domestic violence task force and a life skills counseling program for female offenders.
Receiving the Maumee River Award for “exceptional generosity and civic responsibility in providing financial support or leadership in the community” will be Brad and Julie Rubini. The Rubinis started Claire’s Day 10 years ago in honor and memory of their daughter. The annual event features author visits and rewards students for improvement in reading.
Receiving Golden Apple Awards for excellence in education will be Denise Budge, a second grade teacher at Fort Miami Elementary; Staci Leach, an English teacher at Maumee High School; John Kolbow, a math teacher and coach at Gateway Middle School; and Gary Rettig, principal at St. Joseph Catholic School.
Budge was nominated by a former student, who said students enjoy Budge’s creative and enthusiastic teaching style.
Leach was nominated by two current students, who said she challenges them while making class enjoyable.
Kolbow was nominated by a fellow teacher, who wrote, “John is truly an inspiration for those around him, including both students, athletes and colleagues. When John is part of a team, it is better because of his leadership, dedication and experience.”
Rettig, who plans to retire at the end of the school year, was nominated by school staff members for his “caring attitude and tireless work to improve St. Joe’s.”
For more information or to reserve tickets, call the Maumee Chamber of Commerce at (419) 893-5805.