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Community members honored

Honors were for community service, police work and sustainability

Before diving into the minutiae of its goals and rules Monday night, West Linn City Council took time to present three community awards at City Hall. In addition to the annual Robert Moore Award for community service, an award was also presented by the local Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) to West Linn Police Sergeant Dave Kempas, and the Friends of Robinwood Station were honored with a Clackamas County Leaders in Sustainability Award.

‘I can’t think of anyone more deserving’

For his many years of volunteer work at Mary S. Young Park, Dave Kruse was presented with the 2015 Robert Moore Award, joining 2014 winner Lisa Clifton and 2013 winner Alexana Kachirisky as the third person to win the award since it was created in 2013.

TIDINGS PHOTO: PATRICK MALEE - Dave Kruse was named the winner of the 2015 Robert Moore Award Monday, in recognition of his service at Mary S. Young Park.

The Robert Moore Award — named after West Linn’s founder — was designed to “recognize individuals who contribute to the quality of life in the community without reward or recognition.” To name the award after Moore was only fitting; though he founded the city, Moore chose to name it after friend and mentor Dr. Lewis Linn.

In total, the City received 18 nominations for 11 different people, according to Assistant City Manager Kirsten Wyatt. An award committee — which included both Kachirisky and Clifton — reviewed the nominations and recommended that Kruse receive the 2015 award.

“I cannot stress the difference Dave makes to our park and community,” resident David Kleinke wrote in a nomination letter. “He has made a significant difference to our community. While volunteering at the park we constantly have folks comment of the beauty of the park compared to years ago.”

As Kleinke wrote, Kruse works an average of 425 hours every year at the park, leading efforts to remove invasive plants and maintain trails. He is set to retire from volunteer activities this spring, thus marking the perfect opportunity to honor his service.

“Although Dave did not by any means do it alone, his leadership made a huge difference,” Kleinke wrote.

Added resident David Baker in a separate nomination letter: “Rain or shine Dave has been out in the park maintaining trails, pulling ivy, improving the watershed and a long list of other activities to help keep the park accessible and beautiful. ... His contribution to West Linn has been tremendous and he will be missed.”

After being presented with an honorary clock, Kruse gave a short speech thanking the community for its help at Mary S. Young Park.

“It’s been great for nine years,” Kruse said. “It’s great to see the number of people using the park since we started.”

A life of service

Shortly after Kruse was honored, Three Rivers VFW representative DJ Ruger presented Kempas with the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award. Kempas was nominated by his fellow officers at the WLPD.

“David Kempas started his life of service in the United States Army as a military police sergeant,” Ruger said. “During his career, Sergeant Kempas has worked as a police officer, detective, detective sergeant, drug recognition officer, field training officer and patrol sergeant. ... Sergeant Kempas has a strong work ethic and he is an excellent example and mentor to newer officers in the police department.”

“I would like to thank everybody for this honor,” Kempas said. “I don’t really feel it’s deserved on my part, but somebody did.”

Kempas also asked for a moment of silence to honor Seaside Police Sergeant Jason Goodding, who was shot and killed Feb. 5.

Leaders in sustainability

Finally, the Friends of Robinwood Station (FORS) group received an award from the Clackamas County Resource Conservation and Solid Waste department as “Leaders in Sustainability.”

FORS completed 24 actions over the course of the year to improve sustainability at the Robinwood Station community center, and was thus certified with a “silver” ranking from Clackamas County. The county’s certification program has three levels: “certified,” “silver,” and “gold.”

“We always have room for improvement,” FORS President Randall Fastabend said. “We’re hoping for gold.”

Patrick Malee can be reached at 503-636-1281 Ext. 106 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..