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Frederick chamber hands out awards at banquet

FREDERICK  The Frederick Chamber of Commerce recognized award winners and installed a new president and other officers during its annual installation banquet Thursday at the Great Plains Technology Center Tillman-Kiowa Campus.

Mercedes Amyx was honored as the 2017 Chamber Volunteer of the Year. She was recognized for her lead in the planning of the Chamber's Christmas events; projects that included the painting and scraping of windows of downtown buildings; and attendance of all local events.

The Most Useful Citizen Awards were presented to Sammy Ziegler and Lance Bohannon by the Frederick Lions Club. Ziegler was recognized for her work as director of the Thanksgiving Community Meal and local clothes closet and food bank, along with other activities. Bohannon was recognized for his efforts in raising $60,000 in scholarship funds for the Big Topics programs at Frederick Middle School and Frederick High School, and efforts to bring a robotics program to the high school.

Ryan Ade was installed as the chamber's 2018 president, succeeding Ben Crawford. Other officers installed were John Amyx, president-elect, and directors Justin Chavez, Linda Marcom, Brittany Olsen, Jason Treadwell and Lori Varner.

"It's great to come together as a community," Ade said. "I hope we'll attack the challenges we face with optimism and persistence. The people of Frederick perform at a higher level than is expected of a town of our size," he said.

In his final address as president, Ben Crawford reported that it was an honor to have served as Chamber of Commerce president for two years and as a board member since 2012.

"There's nothing that we're not making our mark on in Frederick," he said. "You can't do great things unless you nail the basics down first."

He said focusing on building a foundation is similar to training a dog before going hunting.

"We have become a powerful, well-oiled machine," he said. "Our world is changing and we must adjust to the new realities that Frederick is not a town of 10,000 (population) anymore. We need to focus on two things: livability and tourism."

Crawford said the success of Frederick can be attributed to its people, an outstanding education system and technology, including availability of high-speed internet. He said Frederick is strategically located within one hour of three military bases (Fort Sill, Altus Air Force Base and Sheppard Air Force Base) and is also near many state parks, lakes and the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, along with local tourist attractions such as Hackberry Flat, the Crawford Collection and the historic Frederick Army Airfield where the World War II Airborne Demonstration Team is headquartered.

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