Chamber honors community leaders

The Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce honored Mountain Area business leaders Jan. 16 during the organization’s annual Installation Dinner and Awards Ceremony at Tenaya Lodge in Fish Camp.

Ahwahnee contractor Randy Papike and Yosemite High School teacher/coach Ellen Peterson were introduced as the Man and Woman of the Year. Papike was introduced by last year’s Man of the Year Dale Miller, and Peterson was introduced by Matt Sconce and Keith Walker of Movie Heroes, Inc.

Receiving the chamber’s Lifetime Achievement Award was Patrice Jensen. She was introduced by Oakhurst CPA Karen White.

The award is the highest honor the chamber can bestow, and is presented to only those who have shown “extraordinary contributions to the community through many years of service.”

Sullivan’s Tire Pros, owned by Mike and Diane Sullivan, were recognized as the Business of the Year. The presentation was made by former chamber board member Colette Goga, owner of Oakhurst Feed and Supply.

The Madera County Economic Development Commission, represented by MCE Executive Director Bobby Kahn, was presented the chamber’s Executive Director’s Award for the organization’s support of the Eastern Madera County Chamber Alliance. The alliance is made up of representatives from the Oakhurst, Coarsegold, Bass Lake, and North Fork chambers working together on behalf of common interests and concerns in the Mountain Area.

During installation ceremonies, Dan Rule of Sierra Tel accepted the president’s gavel from past President Todd Miller (Miller & White CPAs), now serving as Madera County Auditor-Controller.

Other members of the 2015 board of directors include President Elect Don Eaves (Yosemite Bank), Secretary Donna Davis (The Redwoods in Yosemite), Treasurer Betty Linn (Sierra Star), and past President Miller. Newly elected chamber directors are Melanie Barker (realtor with Bass Lake Realty), Anne Driscoll (Branches Books & Gifts), and Shawna Petrushkin (Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.). Re-elected directors are Andrew Pence (W.J. Bradley Mortgage), and Stephanie Simonian (47th Place Carpet One), and continuing directors are Shelle Abbott (Central Valley Community Bank), John Bortz (Century 21 Ditton Realty), and Brian Negley (Emaddco Disposal Service).

Outgoing board members are Chris Baker (Digital Mirrors), Donna Smith (Foster & Parker Insurance), Doug Dearing (retired), and Keith Walker (Movie Heroes, Inc.).

For complete story, see the Jan. 22 edition of the Sierra Star and

- Staff report