"I was surprised. They told me my dad (Andy Glockner) was going to be receiving this award, and I was so nervous for him, but I am so honored, so humbled. I really appreciate it more than you know," Glockner said. "I don't feel deserving of the award, first because I don't feel like I've put enough time in, to deserve something like this, but it means everything because I care so much about this community."
Glockner talked about his family's long history of service to the community, and how he strives to continue the tradition set by the generations before him, "and hopefully my daughter and my kids will keep that tradition going."
Glockner recently opened a state-of-the-art Image Toyota and Honda dealership facility on U.S. 23, Scioto Trail, in Portsmouth.
Glockner, a member of the Toyota Regional Advertising Board, also has been honored with the President's Award by American Honda Motor Company.
The award recognizes the top Honda Dealers in the United States.
He also is involved in the Shawnee State University Development Foundation Board, Southern Ohio Museum Board, and St. Mary's Church Board.
Dr. Kelly Raies, of Portsmouth Vision Center, was named Chamber Member of the Year.
Raies is best known in the community for her efforts to educate the youth of the area on litter prevention and recycling.
Raies said she is seeing some progress in litter prevention in the community.
"I think it's little, and I know it's going to take a long time to turn things around. I'm aware of that, but I think you do see little bits of progress, especially progress in that there are so many people that come up to me and are very supportive of what we're doing," Raies said. "So many people ask me, 'How can I help?'"
Raies, too, was surprised to have won the award.
"I was shocked. I had no idea," she said. "It means a lot. I'm happy that the Chamber recognizes the projects I'm working on, and I know there's a lot of people that I think share this interest, and realize its importance for our community."
Raies founded Scioto County Clean Team in 2006 and has organized various litter programs in area schools.
"This year, when we were choosing our member of the year, a lot of names came up, some were non-members that were really making a difference for the community," said Chamber executive director Lisa Carver. "So we actually ended up doing three new awards, called the 'Making a Difference,' awards just for that purpose, because there were so many names that did float to the top."
"Making a Difference" awards were presented to Rita Haider, Dr. Robin Hamm-LaValley, and Sue Burke.
Haider, project coordinator for Center for International Programs at Shawnee State University, also is co-president of the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity and is involved heavily in the annual Crop Walk.
Hamm-LaValley, a local optometrist, president elect of Kiwanis Club of Portsmouth and a member of Portsmouth Lions Club, does mentoring and job shadowing for area high school students and is a community adviser for SSU's Optometry students job shadowing program.
Hamm-LaValley also is active in Vision USA, a branch of American Optometric Association, where she provides free eye exams to low-income individuals who do not have insurance, and has been an active participant in a dozen self-funded mission trips to Central and South America.
Burke is a Master Gardener with The Ohio State University Extension Service, and has worked with Portsmouth Garden Club, the 1810 House and is a member of Portsmouth Beautification Committee that focuses on the maintenance and beautification of Tracy Park.
Burke also is active with Main Street Portsmouth, and focuses her efforts on the planting and cleaning of Alexandria Point Park.
Keynote speaker, Rob Johnson of WSAZ-TV, told the audience to be aware of the TV viewing changes coming in February, when all TV programming will be strictly digital.
"In February, WSAZ will go off the air, and in February WSAZ-HD will go on the air," Johnson said. "We don't know if all of our viewers are going to have TV at all."
Johnson spoke about segments of society who could find it is not affordable for them to receive the new digital signal.
"Poor families are not going to go out and spend $2,000 on a digital TV," he said.
But Johnson said the TV industry is hopeful prices for digital converters will continue to go down.
Fourteen people also were presented plaques for graduating from the Leadership Portsmouth course.
FRANK LEWIS can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232.