Steele Creek Lodge in Satsuma was packed Thursday, March 26 at the Satsuma Community Development Organization-sponsored banquet honoring the eight nominees for Citizen of the Year 2014. Those recognized for their sevice to the community were Anna Gardner, Terry Keasler, Becky Murray, Billy Reeves, Linda Robbins, Larry Speights, Sue Speights and Linda Tindle.
Judges were Rev. Dave Rhodes, pastor at Chickasaw United Methodist Church; Gary Smallwood, Honeywell International and Cary Wilson, Five Rivers Boy Scouts Districts.
Mayor and SCDO President Paul Murray served as Master of Ceremonies, welcoming all attendees and introducing Andrea Charlton, Chair of the COY event. City council member Tom Williams recognized distinguished guests, including the five former Citizens of the Year, Jack Presnall, Mary Deas Pierce, Mary Atchison, Harriet Cain Gibson and Jimmy Upton. He also thanked Satsuma High School Jazz Band for their outstanding music before and during the dinner.
Mary Atchison presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to Melvin and Shirley Robinson, who have spent many decades in service to Satsuma. Patricia Morra and Margie Piche introduced the nominees, who received framed certificates of appreciation from Lavoyce Richards and James Henderson.
Then Mayor Murray announced the winner of Satsuma Citizen of the Year 2014--Anna Gardner. She was presented a plaque by 2013 COY, Jimmy Upton.
During the ceremony, those attending were reminded of the words of Winston Churchill: "We make a living by what we do. We make a life by what we give" and those of Helen Keller: "Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much." Satsuma, speakers said, epitomizes the truth embodied in those words.