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Tualatin celebrates its best at chamber's Celebrate Tualatin event

The Tualatin Chamber of Commerce honors some of its best and brightest on Thursday

TIMES PHOTO: MILES VANCE - Lam Research's Denise Macrigeanis reacts after Lam was presented with the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce award for Outstanding Business Large during Thursday's Celebrate Tualatin event at Tualatin Country Club.Tualatin's best and brightest came out to celebrate on Thursday.

They came out to celebrate business, to celebrate cooperation, to celebrate volunteerism, but mostly, to celebrate Tualatin at the 35th annual Celebrate Tualatin event sponsored by the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce.

The event, held at Tualatin Country Club with Portland General Electric as title sponsor, gave the Chamber a chance to recognize and honor some of the city's best.

Those awards were:

Business Leader of the Year Award

Charlie Hopewell of Sunset Manufacturing Co. received the honors.

Frank Lonergan of Republic Services, who presented the award, said, "Charlie embraces the mission to find ways to better support the entire community. ... He also runs a very successful company. How he does this is beyond me."

Hopewell said winning the award was a "huge surprise."

"About a week and a half to two weeks ago, I hadn't signed up to come to the luncheon yet, and so I decided to vote (for the awards), and all of a sudden, I saw my name," he said.

Spirit of Tualatin Award

Susan Noack, a volunteer and event organizer for the Meals on Wheels People at the Juanita Pohl Center, was honored by city manager and Chamber board member Sherilyn Lombos.

"She never seems to stop," Lombos said. "Whenever an opportunity arises to help others in need, Susan steps to the plate."

Noack spoke glowingly of the Tualatin community.

"Meals on Wheels People is near and dear to my heart," Noack said. "And I'm a senior, I'm retired and I give a lot of time to them, but in turn, I give it to the community because I love Tualatin. I have my 'I Love Tualatin' sticker on my car, and I'm very proud of it."

Outstanding Community Service Business Award

Angela Venetz of PGE presented this award to Lam Research Corp., a high-tech manufacturer that is Tualatin's largest employer.

Lam Research representative Denise Macrigeanis said the company is proud of its efforts to make a difference in Tualatin.

"We believe in this community, and we aren't going anywhere," she said.

Outstanding Community Service Individual Award

Dale Potts of Transamerica Financial Advisors Inc. received this award for volunteerism in the community.

Steve White of RE/MAX, who presented the award, told Potts, "I gotta tell you, you're the type of person that when I get to see you, you make me a better man just simply looking at you."

"This is really a wonderful community," Potts said, crediting Chamber Chief Executive Officer Linda Moholt and her staff with their work on behalf of Tualatin businesses.

Chamber Volunteer of the Year Award

This award went to Joan Riley of Northwest Boomer & Senior News, Juice Plus+ and The Tower Garden.

Robert Knight of Express Employment Services, the award presenter, said to laughter, "Joan's nice. She's really a nice person. She always has a smile. She does whatever it takes."

Knight added, "Joan is an enthusiastic supporter of the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce in every capacity. … Simply put, Joan, you're a great volunteer that makes our Chamber great."

Riley said she felt "very honored and very privileged" to receive the award.

"I actually live in Newberg, but I love Tualatin. I feel like I live here and sleep there," Riley said.

Hatcher said Riley "has always been an advocate for the Chamber."

Rookie of the Year Award

Chad Baker of Chad Baker Photography, who also took pictures for the Chamber at the event, was awarded as an outstanding newcomer to the Tualatin business community.

The award was presented by the Chamber's member services director, Liz Hatcher.

Baker said he was "very honored" by the award.

"If you had told me about, what, a year and a half ago if I would actually be successful with my own business … I probably wouldn't believe you," Baker said. "But with the help with chambers, Tualatin Chamber and Tigard Chamber both, it's really helped launch my business into a successful career."

Lifetime Achievement Award

Moholt said this was a new award category created for the Chamber's 35th anniversary. She presented the award to Larry McClure of the Tualatin Historical Society.

"He volunteers and is never known to say no to anything," Moholt said of McClure. "He's the Energizer Bunny that just keeps on giving, and it's one of the reasons that we do so well in our local community, our region and our world."

McClure said he prefers to be "behind the scenes," and he gave credit to a number of other longtime volunteers with whom he works.

"We enjoy all the work we do," he said of himself and his wife. "Thank you very much for this recognition."

Chamber Ambassador of the Year Award

Unlike the other awards, this one had no public list of nominees and was not subject to a vote. The honor went to Lindy Hughes of the Tualatin Heritage Center.

"What a surprise," Hughes said. "Thank you very much. I love the Chamber, I love to volunteer. Well, my kids will tell you that — I'm never home."

TIMES PHOTO: MILES VANCE - Susan Noack of Meals on Wheels People smiles as Sherilyn Lombos of the city of Tualatin presents her with the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce award for Spirit of Tualatin during Thursday's Celebrate Tualatin event at Tualatin Country Club.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story misspelled the name of Dale Potts' business. It is Transamerica Financial Advisors Inc. The story has also been updated with quotes and additional awards.