The Regional Awards are for individuals or projects representing, or contained in, any jurisdiction within Linn, Benton, and Lincoln Counties. This year’s awards are intended to honor projects and programs that have been completed over the last year.
The OCWCOG Board Chair retains a yearly award to be given at his or her discretion to any person or entity that he or she believes to be outstanding and that has contributed to the regional discussion. (No nominations will be accepted for this award.)
Previous winners: T. Gerding Corporation and Dr. Larry Mullins (Former President / CEO of Samaritan Health Services)
Citizen of the Region Award
This award will recognize an exceptional citizen of our tri-County Region who has proven to be a community leader, role model, trend setter, or visionary, or who possesses other demonstrable qualities that set them and their work apart. The award is not intended for political activism or engagement.
2019 Nominee: Wendy Kirbey (Albany Historic Carousel and Museum)
Previous winners: Mike Volpe (Senior and Disability Services Advocate) and Dr. Greg Hamann (President, Linn-Benton Community College)
Community Partner or Business of the Year Award
The nominee will be a non-governmental organization (a non-profit, college, university, private or public company, or a subsidiary therein) that has demonstrated a commitment to bettering the lives of residents of our tri-County Region and/or has shown a commitment to growing the economy, and/or helping strengthen our communities; is a proven leader in their field; and demonstrates partnership, collaboration, and innovation.
2019 Nominees: 4 Spirits Distillery, Oregon RAIN, and Russ Hedge (ServPro of Benton and Linn Counties)
Previous winners: Oregon State Credit Union and Alyrica Networks, Inc.
Meals on Wheels Volunteer of the Year Award
In the spirit of this Annual Dinner being a fundraiser for the Meals on Wheels program, OCWCOG will recognize one exemplary Meals on Wheels Volunteer of the Year. This Volunteer Award will recognize an individual who has given of themselves above and beyond for our seniors and persons with disabilities in our communities. This Volunteer will also have a demonstrated community spirit, giving, and selflessness.
2019 Nominees: Bill Goslow (Corvallis Meal Site Volunteer), Ruth and Mike Higgs (Mill City Meal Site Volunteers), Todd McCraven (Lebanon Meal Site Volunteer), and Bill Teal (South Linn Meal Site Volunteer)
Previous winners: Carol Dorning (Waldport Meal Site Volunteer) and Georgiann Jones (Brownsville Meal Site Volunteer, awarded posthumously)
Project of the Year Award
A nomination for Project of the Year can be of almost any type: planning, research, program, study, physical infrastructure (transportation, public safety, health, water, sewer, broadband, etc.), or implementation of a new system or process. The Project must be innovative, of community significance, and demonstrate how a community will be better because of it. The Project will be replicable, and demonstrate a commitment of community partners, other jurisdictions (if applicable), and collaboration.
2019 Nominees: Andersen Construction (Hatfield Marine Research Center), Dolly Parton Imagination Library, and The Linn Benton 8 Cities Collaborative
Previous winners: City of Lincoln City and the Bijou Theatre; and Port of Toledo
Volunteer of the Year Award
OCWCOG’s Volunteer of the Year will recognize an individual who has given of themselves above and beyond. This individual will demonstrate community spirit, giving, and selflessness.
2019 Nominees: The Honorable Dale Collins (City of Philomath), Michele Eldridge (Cities of Monroe and Harrisburg, Mayor Eric Niemann (City of Philomath), and Joe Novelle (Port of Toledo)
Previous winners: Catherine Skiens (Former Linn County Commissioner, and Senior and Disability Services Advocate) and Joni Nelson (Volunteer for City of Brownsville)