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Awards handed out at annual Chamber banquet

The Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and its members celebrated another successful year at the annual awards celebration that took place at Arrowwood Resort January 11.

The Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and its members celebrated another successful year at the annual awards celebration that took place at Arrowwood Resort January 11.

Awards and applause accented the evening as the Chamber recognized key people who have contributed to the organization's success.

Joyce Hansen of Alexandria was this year's recipient of the Education Appreciation Award, which is presented to outstanding educators in the Alexandria area.

The purpose of the award, according to the district, "is to enhance the school and business community partnerships by expressing publicly to the men and women who work in teaching and non-teaching positions in public and non-public schools in District 206 the widespread appreciation for their efforts."

Hanson was nominated by District 206 teachers and personnel because of her outstanding history of serving District 206.

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KXRA-Radio was presented with the Education Partnership Award. Dean Anderson, chair of the Alexandria School District 206 School Board, presented the award to Brett Paradis, owner of KXRA.

This award is to recognize an outstanding business or individual's efforts in educational partnership.

The purpose of the award, according to the district, "is to enhance the school and business community partnerships by expressing publicly to area businesses and/or individuals who actively support public and non-public schools in District 206 the widespread appreciation for their efforts."

KXRA was selected because of its ongoing dedication to District 206 athletics, music, foundation and educational programs.

Other awards included:

  • Retiring Chamber board members Diann Drew, Al Crowser and Chris Schroeder were recognized for their years of service.
  • The Chamber's 2007 president, Yvonne Kinney Hockert, was commended for leading the organization through a successful year. She was presented with the traditional caricature drawing.
  • Bruce Wiitanen was presented with the Friend of the Chamber Award for having an active involvement with the Chamber. He was honored for his continued service with the Chamber over the past 12 years.

Wiitanen is a past Chamber board member, ongoing member of the Chamber Finance Committee and was instrumental in starting and supporting Ole Oppe Fest, the forerunner to Awake the Lakes.

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