Town honours Reid, employees at annual dinner

The Town of Fort Frances saluted its retirees and employees who have reached 25 years of service, as well as 2005 “Citizen of the Year” Patti-Jo Reid, at its annual appreciation dinner Friday night at La Place Rendez-Vous.
As she was greeted on stage by 1994 “Citizen of the Year” Mark Kowalchuk and 2000 honouree Bill Gushulak, Reid clearly was moved for being recognized for her years of volunteer work here.
“It’s been my pleasure to serve this community and I will continue to do so as long as I’m mentally and physically able to do so,” she remarked.
“A big heartfelt thanks to all of you for this honour. It’s so great to be appreciated. I thank you so much,” added Reid.
Reid thanked the people who nominated her, the “Citizen of the Year” selection committee, the community of Fort Frances, her fellow committee members on all the boards she’s involved with, her family, and her mother, whom she credited as a role model when it came to being an active community volunteer.
Reid received a “Citizen of the Year” plaque, and her photo will hang in the Civic Centre along with all the previous honourees.
Meanwhile, the only retiree this year was local firefighter Hugh McKinnon.
The dinner also recognized those employees who reached 25 years of service with the town. They included Linda Hyatt, George Supinski, Graham Matheson, Randy White, Gerry Hawley, Jill Coran, Stancey Ogden, John Morrin, Brian Mueller, David Egan, and Mark McCaig.
Past retirees and employees who previously reached 25 years of service also were noted Friday night.
The program also included recognition of spouses of deceased employees, councillors, management, media, and the 30-plus town boards and committees, which include town staff and councillors as well as citizens among their membership.
A moment of silence also was held to note the deaths of former fire chief Ralph Fulford and Coun. Struchan Gilson, both of whom passed away in the last year.
Brian Hagarty, the town’s interim human resources manager, was emcee for the evening. Mayor Dan Onichuk, Coun. Rick Wiedenhoeft, and McCaig also participated in the program.