Freeman Foundation Executive Director wins Award
Patti Grimes, executive director of the Carl M. Freeman and Joshua M. Freeman Foundation, received the 2011 Lighthouse Award at the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Member Celebration & Awards Ceremony. The event, sponsored by Mediacom, was held Sept. 22 at DiFebo’s Bistro on the Green at Bear Trap Dunes in Ocean View. Beebe Medical Center, Delaware Wave and Inclind Inc. were supporting sponsors of this year’s event.
The Lighthouse Award is chosen directly by the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber’s Board of Directors, and recognizes a longtime chamber member that contributes outstanding leadership and devotion to both the chamber and local community. Dale Bellinger, owner of Bellinger’s Jewelers, handcrafts these replicas of the Fenwick Lighthouse and donates this gift each year.
Grimes was presented the award for her active involvement within the Quiet Resorts community over the years. She served on the chamber’s board of directors from 2002-07 and was president in 2007. Kevin Brady, immediate past president, presented the award to Grimes and commented on how her continuous efforts to improve the quality of life in the area that she lives and works has been instrumental to the Quiet Resorts area and the chamber.
Brady also spoke of Grimes' countless hours of volunteerism and involvement in community organizations like the United Way of Delaware, Delaware Symphony Orchestra, the YWCA, and Adopt-a-Family and Adopt-A-School programs. Over the last several years, Grimes has been one of the driving forces of the Sussex Economic Development Action Committee. It was her energy, leadership and vision that helped create SEDAC, which today is a designated 501 (c) (3) organization. Grimes also won the chamber’s first Inspiring Business Award in 2010.
Six other businesses were presented with awards during the evening. Off the Hook Restaurant received the Best in Business Award. The Cottage Café Restaurant & Pub received the Community Spirit Award. Michael Loftus of Loftus Wealth Strategies received the Inspiring Business Award. Michele Salisbury took home the New Member of the Year Award, and Jennifer Pavik of Vernon Sales Promotion won the Member of the Year Award.
Associate member Marilyn Panagopoulos received the newly named Arlene Hauck Ambassador of the Year Award. The award is selected by the chamber’s Ambassador Committee, a volunteer group that recruits and welcomes new members, and ensures that businesses get the most out of their membership. This award was renamed in 2011 after one of the committees’ most involved members passed away earlier this year.
During the celebration the chamber also inducted its new board of directors and thanked outgoing board members Susan Lyons of Coastal Point, Amy Norgate of Tanger Outlet Center and Past President Steve Morgan of Fairfax Mortgage Group for their time and dedication to the chamber.
For more information, call the chamber at 302-539-2100.