Eastpointe Mayor Monique Owens speaks about the award recipients.

Eastpointe Mayor Monique Owens speaks about the award recipients.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes


Eastpointe, Roseville residents, businesses saluted for their contributions

By: Maria Allard | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published October 4, 2021

 Eastpointe Public Safety Director George Rouhib presents Joshua Ballard with the 2021 Eastpointe Police Officer of the Year Award.

Eastpointe Public Safety Director George Rouhib presents Joshua Ballard with the 2021 Eastpointe Police Officer of the Year Award.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

 Eastpointe Mayor Pro Tem Sarah Lucido presents Jody Ling with the 2021 Eastpointe “You’ve Made a Difference” Award.

Eastpointe Mayor Pro Tem Sarah Lucido presents Jody Ling with the 2021 Eastpointe “You’ve Made a Difference” Award.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

 In a surprise presentation, Eastpointe Mayor Monique Ownes, right, presents Eastpointe-Roseville Chamber of Commerce Director Linda Weishaupt with an award.

In a surprise presentation, Eastpointe Mayor Monique Ownes, right, presents Eastpointe-Roseville Chamber of Commerce Director Linda Weishaupt with an award.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

 The 2021 Ambassador of the Year is Dr. Cassandra Crittenden.

The 2021 Ambassador of the Year is Dr. Cassandra Crittenden.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

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EASTPOINTE/ROSEVILLE — A group of residents and businesses recently were recognized for their contributions to their respective communities.

On Sept. 16, the Eastpointe-Roseville Chamber of Commerce held its 2021 Salute to Excellence award ceremony at Eastpointe Manor. Last year’s event was held virtually because of COVID-19, and this year’s event was held publicly with about 150 attendees.

“It was great. Everybody commented on how nice it was to see everyone again,” chamber Executive Director Linda Weishaupt said. “It’s just a wonderful community event.”

For more than 40 years, the chamber has acknowledged businesses, residents, youth, educators and first responders for their dedication and service to the community. Businesses are also honored for redevelopment and/or renovation and for having 25 years of history, or more, in the community.

In August, chamber members began receiving nominations.

“We have a committee that goes through all the nominations and makes a decision,” Weishaupt said.

The following were honored:

Police Officer of the Year — Joshua Ballard (Eastpointe) and Heather Owczarek (Roseville).

Firefighter of the Year — Andy Pounders (Eastpointe) and Brandon Schwartz (Roseville).

Citizen of the Year — William Randazzo (Eastpointe) and Michael Switalski (Roseville).

Business of the Year — K. Mathes Insurance Agency (Eastpointe) and Cadillac Products Automotive Co. (Roseville).

Capital Improvement Award — Two awards, the business Big Daddy Games and the nonprofit organization APAWS-Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue (Eastpointe) and Holiday Inn Express (Roseville).

Pioneer Award — Michael Curis, East Brooke Commons (Eastpointe) and the Honey Baked Ham Co. (Roseville).

You’ve Made a Difference — Jody L. Ling (Eastpointe) and Live Rite Structured Recovery Corp., Brenda Maks (Roseville).

Eastpointe Educator of the Year — Lisa Ayrault, elementary school; Cassandra Lipari, middle school; Stephanie VanHaerents, high school.

Roseville Educator of the Year — Denise Cozzolino, elementary school; Kay Drake, middle school; Robert Smitka, high school.

Student of the Year — Madison VanNortrick (Eastpointe) and Jacqueline Brun (Roseville).

Eastpointe-Roseville Chamber Ambassador of the Year — Dr. Cassandra Crittenden.

According to an Eastpointe-Roseville Chamber of Commerce press release, also recognized were the Fraser Public Schools’ Educators of the Year: Tracey Bell, elementary school; Monica Orlando, middle school; and Karen Davis, high school.

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