For the last 28 years, the All American City of Kenai has been singling out individuals for special recognition at the Kenai Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards Gala. The event this year was held in the newly completed addition to the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska in Kenai, catered by Michelle Steinbeck & Country Foods the buffet featured an oyster bar courtesy of Snug Harbor Seafood and specialty salmon provided by Sea Products. Sue Biggs and Jack Will provided entertainment.
The first award of the evening for Community Service went to Kenai Mayor John Williams, and is presented annually to an individual or business that has consistently donated time to the efforts of the community. The Business of the Year Award presented to a business that has consistently contributed to the community went to ERA Aviation, and was received by Judy Erikson on behalf of ERA.
Former Legislator and Borough Mayor Mike Navarre was chosen as the Volunteer of the Year, an award presented to the individual who has consistently volunteered time and effort to Kenai Chamber events and programs. The new executive director of the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce, Michelle Glaves, was presented the President's Choice award from past president Cherie Curry, formerly Cherie Brewer.
There are two special awards that are unique to the Kenai Chamber, they are the Pioneer Award, presented to persons who have been in the Kenai area for 25 years and have been instrumental in the development of business, education, cultural or recreational activities during their residence, and the Log Cabin Award given to someone whose life reflects the unwritten law of Alaska that a cabin in the wilderness is a refuge welcome to all weary travelers, but that in return those using the cabin replenish wood and supplies thus, leaving the cabin ready for the next traveler. This year's recipient of the Kenai Chamber's Pioneer Award was Dick and Barbara Hultberg, and the Log Cabin Award went to Louis and Terry Schilling.
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