Call for Nominations for 2020 Citizen of the Year

Award to be Presented November 19th During Bedford County Chamber of Commerce Awards Celebration

Bedford, Pennsylvania, September 21, 2020The Rotary Club of Bedford, Bedford Sunrise Rotary and the Bedford Elks Lodge are pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted for the 2020 Citizen of the Year Award, to be presented at the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet on November 19th.

Citizen of the Year is presented annually by the three local service organizations to recognize individuals who exemplify the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self” and/or the Elks motto of “Elks Care, Elks Share.”

The Rotary and Elks organizations, faced with many challenges due to the Covid-19 pandemic, including gathering restrictions and changes in club meetings, were not able to conduct the Citizen of the Year nomination process this summer, as is the clubs’ tradition.

To allow the award to be presented in a safe manner, and with all the distinction due to a Citizen of the Year honoree, the organizations will partner with the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce to honor the 2020 recipient during the Chamber’s Annual Awards Celebration.

“The Chamber dinner is the most significant celebration of the business community of the year,” said Sunrise Rotary Co-President Koren Woy Smith. “We are so glad to be able to recognize a deserving individual in such a prestigious setting in this time of unprecedented challenges for our community.”

“The award will still be chosen by the Citizen of the Year Committee, independent of the Chamber awards selection process,” added Jennifer Holler, president of the (evening) Rotary Club of Bedford. “And members of the three sponsoring clubs will present the award together during the Chamber dinner.”

New in 2020, Citizen of the Year nominations may be submitted electronically through a new web link or by submitting the traditional print nomination form.  Both are available here:


Or Download pdf Nomiantion Form Here.

 Hard-copy forms are also available at the Chamber office or may be downloaded from the Chamber website or obtained through the Rotary Clubs and Elks Lodge.

The deadline to submit a nomination is October 9th at 5pm.  The honoree will be announced in mid-October.

“With so much uncertainty this year, we are glad that we are able to continue the Citizen of the Year program in this way,” said Sunrise Rotary Co-President Katie Fink. “The Chamber dinner is always a wonderful event, and plans are being made to hold it in a safe way, and within whatever the state guidelines may be at that time.”

The Chamber’s Annual Dinner and Award Celebration is currently scheduled for November 19th at the new corporate hangar at the Bedford County Airport, likely with a limited number of attendees.  If the gathering limitations do not allow for that indoor gathering, the event will be moved to the Silver Lining Drive-In for a gourmet boxed dinner with the awards program projected onto the giant screen.

“One way or another, awards will  be presented,” said Bob Octavio, Secretary of the Elks Lodge and Treasurer of the Chamber. “This year, maybe more than ever, it’s incredibly important to celebrate the good things that businesses and individuals have accomplished.”

Tickets for the Chamber dinner are $89 and will be available October 1st. You may also register online through the Chamber of Commerce community calendar at or call (814) 623-2233 to RSVP. Program ads are also available to businesses or individuals who wish to congratulate the Citizen of the Year and other honorees.

For more information on the Chamber dinner, call Kellie Goodman Shaffer at the Chamber office  or email: