It was a full house Friday evening as the Globe-Miami Chamber of Commerce and the Pinal Mountain Foundation for Higher Education partnered on the annual awards dinner and benefit art auction. The rain outside did little to dampen the festive spirit for the evening at the Dream Manor Inn.
Two prestigious awards were announced as part of the dinner. Molly Cornwell was recipient of the Kip Culver Award, presented to recognize dedication to the arts and historic preservation. Ian Lamont Jr. was named 2016 Citizen of the Year, an award given for long-time community service.
The Kip Culver Award announcement was met with a standing ovation as Molly’s name was called.
“The Center for the Arts has an ardent supporter in Molly. She has served on its board for many years and she continues to work where needed. You might see her on stage with the Copper Cities Community Players, or perhaps she will be in back making sure that the after-reception is picture perfect,” said JoNell Brantley, who announced the award.
Molly’s efforts with the Globe Downtown Association, Community Concert Association and with a multitude of events such as Ghosts of Globe and Bawdy Broad Street tour to promote the area were cited, along with her work with movie crews filming in the area. She is on the chamber board of directors and is the current vice president. The Historic Home and Building tour has benefited from her interest in history as she works to promote the area.
Whether she is baking for the Farmer’s Market, putting the finishing touches on a reception at the train depot or putting together a basket for a local benefit, Molly always has a smile. People just naturally gravitate to her enthusiasm and happy nature. She has been a long-time promoter for the area and its history. It was no surprise that the award announcement was met with a standing ovation.
Ian Lamont Jr. also was met with a standing ovation as the Citizen of the Year for 2016. He was listened attentively as chamber board member Rebecca Williams and her husband Carl took the podium to talk about the award and it seemed apparent he had no clue until about well in to their remarks that he realized they were talking about him.
“There are so many more deserving people,” he said as he accepted the plaque, but the audience disagreed. Ian has been active with the Globe Rotary Club and its projects, the Cobre Valley Regional Medical Center hospital foundation and its benefit art and wine auction and he is active with St. John’s Episcopal Church. There are very few community causes that have not benefited from his generosity. He is active with the Globe-Miami Chamber of Commerce and with Southern Gila County Economic Development Corporation, having served as both board member and officers for both.
“Ian is so quiet about his community activities that I would guess very few people are aware of his value to the community. But I think quiet ‘doers’ should be recognized even though they generally shun the spotlight,” one letter writer noted. Ian’s daughter and son-in-law made it to town in time to hear the announcement before surprising Ian by appearing at his table.
After the awards, the evening moved onto the art auction for the Pinal Mountain Foundation for Higher Education scholarship benefit. Art work and gift certificates were donated to the cause and silent and live auctions, along with raffle tickets sales, raised a tidy sum for the college.
“We love partnering with the college foundation on this event,” said Franceen Gregovich-Benton, chamber president. “It’s a win-win to not only be able to recognize the immense talent and generous spirit we see in the community, but to also help the college foundation with their fundraiser. This event is a perfect reflection of so much that is good about our area.”