WHITING | Awards commending the citizen of the year and an exemplary public servant and teacher were presented at the recent Whiting-Robertsdale Chamber of Commerce annual dinner.
Paul DePoy received the Carl A. Binhammer Award for Community Service. DePoy will also serve as the grand marshal of the Fourth of July parade in Whiting.
Among his many roles in the community, DePoy has volunteered for Arts Alive and served as a chef for the Garden Walk reception and the Historical Society's garden tea.
Hammond Port Authority Director Milan Kruszynski was awarded the Public Servant of the Year award for his work with the Lost Marsh Clubhouse, Wolf Lake Pavilion and splash pad, among other sites.
Patricia Hasse, St. John the Baptist first-grade teacher, won the Educator of the Year award for her commitment to the classroom. Hasse has been a first-grade teacher at the school for more than 32 years and is known for making learning fun for her students.
This year was the first for the chamber to award the public servant and educator awards. The Binhammer Award is in its 13th year and is the highest honor the chamber bestows.
“It really is a representation of truly an outstanding commitment to the community,” said Tom Dabertin, the chamber's president, of the Binhammer Award. “We consider people who have truly, truly distinguished themselves.”