Who deserves to be recognized as Oakdale Patch's Person of the Year?
During the past week, readers have submitted names of folks they feel deserve the honor. We received six nominations (three individuals and one group of three), which you'll find in the attached poll. Below, you'll find answers to two questions about each nominee from those who nominated them. We did not change the answers at all. What was submitted to us is what you see.
You can vote once a day. We will accept votes until 11:59 p.m. Monday, Dec. 17. Feel free to comment at the bottom about why you voted the way you did. Whomever receives the most votes is Oakdale Patch's Person of the Year and will have a story written about his or her efforts.
This story is one way for us to highlight all the great work going on in Oakdale. The other people nominated should be commended for their giving spirits as well. The person selected isn't receiving an award or gift certificate or anything to that nature—just a little recognition.
Here are the questions:
1. Why should he or she be our Person of the Year or Persons of the Year?
2. What affiliations does this person or persons have (groups, boards, businesses, etc.)?
Here are the nominees, listed in alphabetical order by last name...
1. & 2. Ted has been a committed volunteer and resident of Oakdale and has served this city in many capacities:
- Served the public for over 26 years as Mayor and Council Member for the City of Oakdale.
- Member of Guardian Angels Church
- Former Marine and current Member of the Oakdale Veteran’s Memorial Committee
- Former Member of the ISD 622 Education Foundation
- Founding Member of the Oakdale Athletic Association
- Treasurer of the Maplewood/Oakdale Lions Club
- Chairperson of the Oakdale Summerfest Committee
- Member of the Oakdale Parks and Recreation Commission
- Married, wife Aggie; Seven Children
I’m not sure of anyone that has served the city of Oakdale and the surrounding communities more than Ted.
1. Marc should be Person of the Year because he does so much for the Oakdale community. He is very passionate about the causes he is involved in. He spear headed the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon group for Oakdale, He runs the Winter Wonderland event, He runs the OBPA / City Picnic. He is involved with the Boy Scouts and he is president of Co-Action Academic Resources. Marc is always willing to help to better our community.
2. Business: Platinum Bank. Marc is on the Board of Directors for OBPA (Oakdale Business and Professional Association), Co-Action, Beyond Yellow Ribbon and maybe others.
1. Connie has been the Executive Director for the past 15 years at Oak Meadows Senior Living. (We opened April 1, 1998) She took a start-up senior building, something new to the community, and made a very successful business in Oakdale. Not only have we touched thousands of seniors and their families lives, we have had involvement in all the schools in the city. Many of our board members live in Oakdale (and the surrounding communities.) We have participated in the Holiday Helping Hand program for 14 years. She, and our staff and volunteers, have walked in the Alzheimer’s Walk for the past three years raising over $5,000. As a boss, she has encouraged all of us to get involved including the Oakdale and Woodbury parades to scouting events and countless other projects that make our community better. We employ many Tartan students as well as community members. She is always there….whether it is leading a group or helping us clean up after an event. How many bosses do this?!
She has volunteered at Oakdale Elementary School for the past 7 years as a reading volunteer with the first grade students. They all love “Miss Connie” at Oakdale! Before this she volunteered 3 years at Ames Elementary.
2. Oakdale Business and Professional Association, Woodbury Chamber, Aging Services of Minnesota, she is on the board for her church (I forget name) as well as Reign in Sarcoma. She is also part of some national aging organizations.
Karen Fitzpatrick, Sally Krupich & Marla Simmet (group nomination)
1. & 2. I would like to nominate Marla Simmet, Sally Krupich, and Karen Fitzpatrick as the Persons of the Year. The reason I say not just one person, but three, is that these three women together were instrumental in the opening of the Hope for the Journey Home shelter for families experiencing homelessness here at Guardian Angels. They had been part of a team meeting to address the options available to meet the needs of families experiencing homelessness in Washington County. When the former parish house became vacant, they pursued with the pastor and parish council the idea of using the 8 bedroom house as a shelter. They coordinated many planning teams of parishioners to do the work of transforming the house. They contacted many other churches to join in partnering to offer hospitality. It is the vision, persistence, community organizing skills, patience, and tenacity of these three women that brought this shelter to life. The shelter has been only open since Labor Day and has been at capacity almost the entire time. Additionally, over 500 volunteers from Guardian Angels and the many partner churches have “staffed” a shift at the shelter.