Chamber names winners of Annual Community Awards

The Berkeley Springs-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce has named the winners for their first Annual Community Awards.

The seven winners will be honored at the Hall of Fame & Chamber Awards banquet Thursday, September 14, and will be the grand marshals for the 48th Annual Apple Butter Festival parade on Saturday, October 7.

“We were so glad to see how many of our community embraced this idea, receiving almost 100 entries across the categories!” said Executive Director, Happy Rone.

An anonymous committee of community members then met to choose the winners.  The last award, the coveted “Morganite” winner will be announced at the banquet.

Educator of the Year – Ian Helmick 

Described as someone within the educational system who has gone the extra mile to educate and prepare our students within the community, one of the nominations explained: “Mr. Helmick goes the extra mile each and every day. In his classroom, he always greets students with a smile, and never fails to make kids feel welcomed and encouraged. You can tell he is passionate about both music and being an educator. He teaches kids how to play their instrument and work together in an ensemble. He also makes sure he creates a personal connection with kids so they want to learn. Because of that, kids and parents enjoy seeing him out in the community and he is often cited as a favorite teacher.”

Employee of the Year – Tammy Davison

Awarded to the person that works for someone else but whose commitment and dedication is as if the business is their own. This person arrives early, stays late and otherwise “throws the job description out of the window” to do what needs to be done.

Nominated by her employer at Reed’s Pharmacy, “Tammy has been with us for almost 25 years.  She cares deeply for her community and it shows in her work ethic to provide knowledgeable and empathetic care to our patients. Her commitment and skills as a pharmacist at Reed’s Pharmacy are second to none. She is more than just our employee. She is like family to us.”

Small Business – Blue Flame

This business always has their employees and community at heart and does whatever it takes to provide for their clients and customers. (10 employees or less denotes “small” business.)

“They are an awesome bunch of people. If ever you need something they are there to help,” said their nominator.  “Blue Flame is consistently donating time and items to the community to benefit the schools, non-profits and youth programs. Blue Flame puts their community as a priority to support growth and prosperity within the many organizations. Stop by the office and you will find the nicest and most wonderful team to work with on any effort.”

Large Business – War Memorial Hospital

This business always has their employees and community at heart and does whatever it takes to provide for their clients and customers. (11 or more employees denotes “large” business.)

“War Memorial has been providing healthcare to the Morgan County community for close to 75 years. They are also the largest employer in the area. Over the years the hospital has sponsored numerous events and funded projects to support the well-being of the residents of Morgan County. The employees take pride in providing excellent care to patients and visitors and many employees are involved in community groups. The hospital is vital to this rural area because many residents are unable to travel to seek healthcare. Overall, this hospital should receive the award for large business of the year because of their steadfast service to Morgan County and their commitment to provide service to anyone and everyone without discrimination.”

Community Hero – Kevin Barney 

Awarded to law enforcement, fire & rescue, or other service members who protect and show up for our community.

“Officer Kevin Barney sticks out to me in his interactions with not just community members, but students alike. I have seen how incredibly wonderful he has been with the Berkeley Springs High School students. Let’s be honest, the high school age is a bit hard to deal with sometimes, but he earned so much respect and handles the students with such grace, it drove them to appreciate his role in their lives and the community. I appreciated having him in the school system and hope that others will see just how impactful he was.”

Community Service Award – Cindy Hovermale 

Awarded to the person that strives to make the county a better place through service to the community.

“Cindy is an outstanding asset to the community of Berkeley Springs. Her kindness and compassion for the town and its residents are unmatched. Cindy (and her entire family) are always there for those in need,” wrote her nominator. “Cindy has always gone above and beyond for the citizens and community. Her heart is so big, her kindness is amazing, and her love for her community is beyond all others.”

“If you have ever walked the streets of Morgan County, you would hear her name in the most positive of ways. She is constantly giving to our community organizations, raising money for whoever is in need, praising the accomplishments of everyone in the community and there when you need a helping hand. There is no doubt that this woman was put on this earth to care for others above herself. With the perfect example in her parents, Roy and Betty Hovermale, Cindy continues the battle every day to show what it means to love and care for your neighbor. Love ya, mean it…her mantra for all.”

The first Annual Berkeley Springs – Morgan County Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet will be held on Thursday, September 14 at The Country Inn, tickets are available on the Chamber website:

For more information call the Berkeley Springs-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce at 304-258-3738 or find them on Facebook.