The community came out in force for the 29th Annual Community Awards Banquet on Tuesday.
The event, put on by the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce, was kicked off by Master of Ceremonies, Larry Ishmael.
“We’re hoping to get everyone out of here by 3,” he joked at the start of the ceremonies at 11:30 a.m.
One of the big awards of the day was Citizen of the Year, which went to Robin Kelley. She was overcome by emotion as she went to accept her award for ‘showing up to every Issaquah event and providing manpower.’
Kelley grew up in Issaquah and, after a few years away, moved back.
“I realized it’s a pretty good place,” Kelley said.
The Hall of Fame award, presented by Mayor Ava Frisinger and Council President Maureen McCarry went to Skip Rowley for his years of work in the community,. The businessman worked to save the salmon hatchery, build the community center and reconfigure the culverts under I-90 for fish travel.
Rowley was unable to attend the event as he was in Finland at the time, so his daughter Kari Magill accepted the award on his behalf.
Other awards included:
Volunteer of the Year Award, which went to JoAnn McHolland for her continuous work, including walking the streets at Salmon Days.
“It’s really my pleasure that I am able to be Issaquah’s streetwalker,” McHolland said.
The Environmental Excellence Award went to Pat Van Eaton. Van Eaton was awarded a Dwarf Jade Butterfly tree for his work on the restoration of Issaquah Creek.
The Lifesaver Award went to Brian Callans for saving his mother, Chris, after he found her unconscious on her treadmill. Brian ran and got his father, who started CPR until Eastside Fire & Rescue. EF&R worked on her for two hours at Overlake Hospital and she survived.
“I’m speechless,” Brian said. “I don’t have anything to say.”
“A lot of people did save my life that day but it started with Brian,” Chris said.
Judd Kirk won Business Person of the Year for his work in invigorating Issaquah’s economy.
Four students were named Rotary Students of the Year. Liz Becker and Victoria Krantz from Tiger Mountain, Bonnie Young from Issaquah and Heather Milligan from Liberty made the top honor.