GILMER â€” Ruby N. Allen was named the Gilmer Area Chamber of Commerceâ€™s â€śOutstanding Citizenâ€ť for 2013 at the chamberâ€™s 2014 banquet Thursday night.
Other award recipients at the gathering, held at the Gilmer Civic Center, included women of the First Baptist Churchâ€™s jail ministry, who received the â€śHumanitarianâ€ť award; Taylor Miller, â€śEducator of the Year;â€ť Ike Fluellen, the â€śTop Handâ€ť award; and volunteers of the Upshur County Hospital Auxiliary, the â€śUnsung Heroâ€ť award.
Charlie Cano, general manager and chief executive officer of Gilmer-based Etex Telephone Cooperative, was banquet speaker.
Mrs. Allen was cited for her work with young people, including her â€śgoal of improving studentsâ€™ readingâ€ť by enhancing local â€ścultural opportunities;â€ť supporting school board membersâ€™ and educatorsâ€™ efforts to raise childrenâ€™s self-esteem; and recruiting many teenage volunteers to serve in nursing and convalescent homes.
She also was honored for being a member of Zion Hill Baptist Church who helps serve food to families in need â€śbehind the scenes.â€ť
The eight women in the 12-year-old First Baptist jail ministry were cited for taking turns teaching the Bible on Monday afternoons to female inmates in the Upshur County Jail.
Ms. Miller, an English teacher in New Diana ISD, was cited for sponsoring her schoolâ€™s Student Council, leading pupils in service projects for the community and in fun activities for them, and sponsoring â€śtheme days for school spirit and morale.â€ť
Fluellen was honored for his work not only on the chamber board and East Texas Yamboree board, but for his volunteer work for those organizations before he was elected to their boards.
The 24-member hospital auxiliary was cited for averaging more than 4,800 hours of volunteer service annually in such activities as handling tasks for patients and visitors, making blankets in the emergency room, assisting with the countyâ€™s annual health fair, and raising money for scholarships for local youth planning to enter the medical field.