The West Seneca Chamber of Commerce has announced its annual Community Award recipients, and will celebrate the accomplishments of the winners with a Community Awards Dinner in February at Kloc’s Grove in West Seneca.
The 2020 Citizen of the Year Award will be presented to Michael Hughes. Chief of Staff at Kaleida Health, Hughes has served on the West Seneca Zoning Board for 13 years, NFTA Board for 11 years and Mercy Flight Board for three years. He has coached West Seneca Wings Hockey since 2009 and served as a coach and manager in West Seneca Soccer since 2007. Previously, he served as a Bishop Timon – St. Jude High School Trustee for six years, on the Canisius College Board of Regents for six years, and on the Board of Directors for the Waterfront Nursing Home, Buffalo Place and Police Athletic League.
Business of the Year will be presented to Horizon Martial Arts and owner Tim Hartman. Horizon Martial Arts is a family oriented martial arts school dedicated to helping students become knowledgeable, self-confident, civic-minded young adults. Horizon Martial Arts has participated in West Seneca Continuing Education programs since the early 1990s, and Hartman now serves on the planning committee of the Taste of West Seneca, where he sponsored the new Kids Zone in 2019. Recently, he helped organize the first West Seneca Halloween Spooktacular at the Wimbledon Plaza.
The award for 2020 Educator of the Year will be presented to Craig Ersing, a math teacher at West Seneca West Senior High School who has worked in education for 21 years. Often one of the first in the building and last to leave each day, Ersing is very passionate about his students and their personal wellbeing. He is a visible member of the school community and is frequently seen attending sporting events, concerts and other district activities.
Earning the 2020 Community Service Organization of the Year title are the Friends of the Burchfield Nature & Art Center. Under the leadership of President Jean Schenck, the organization’s mission is to serve community interests in art, recreation, music, history and nature by providing a welcoming and educational facility. This is accomplished thanks to a dedicated group of volunteers who plan and carry out activities such as concerts, presentations, activities for children and a wide variety of special events. Volunteers also help improve the park grounds, greet visitors and answer questions.
The award for 2020 Chamber Member of the Year will be presented to the GEICO Local Office West Seneca, located in the Southgate Plaza. Scott Kaltman and his team have been huge supporters of the West Seneca Chamber of Commerce, sponsoring the GEICO Power Lunch Series in 2019 and 2020, supporting the Chamber’s annual West Seneca Community Guide for two consecutive years, and promoting a holiday contest that has now benefitted five local nonprofit organizations over two years. Additionally, Kaltman was recently elected to a three-year term on the Chamber’s Board of Directors.
The annual Community Awards Dinner will take place at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12, at Kloc’s Grove, 1245 Seneca Creek Road, West Seneca. Tickets are $40 each, $80 per couple or $320 for a reserved table of eight. Half-page ads in the event’s program are also available for $50. For more information or to purchase tickets or program ads, please contact the West Seneca Chamber of Commerce at 674-4900 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the Chamber of Commerce office in the West Seneca Community Center & Library at 1300 Union Road.
Sponsors of the 2020 Community Awards Dinner include ACP Technologies Inc., Chakra Communications, Financial Trust Federal Credit Union, Law Offices of Paul Notaro, M&T Bank – Southgate Plaza Branch, Shell Fab Custom Countertops & Casework and the West Seneca Sun.