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DISABILITY AWARENESS CELEBRATED AT AWARDS

Nine people and two businesses were honored Wednesday at the 13th annual Disability Awareness Awards in Christ First United Methodist Church.

The awards honor those who have made outstanding contributions to improving the lives of people with disabilities in Chautauqua County.

The award winners were:

Advocate of the Year -- Paul Hoefler of Jamestown, a radio talk show host who has educated listeners about group homes for disabled people.

Employee of the Year -- Terri Service of Jamestown, the Resource Center's assistant coordinator for residential and day habitation.

Employer of the Year -- Honest John's Restaurant of Jamestown, where owner John Raymond has consistently provided employment for people in the area with disabilities.

Humanitarian of the Year -- Keven Hulings of Falconer, an amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patient who fought to live at home instead of in a hospital, then organized a fund to help others with debilitating conditions do the same.

Outstanding Consumer -- Ron Dormer of Jamestown, who has excelled in his job at Dawson Metal of Jamestown, which was obtained through the Resource Center's Supported Employment Program.

Outstanding Service -- Centaur Stride of Westfield, which has improved the lives of hundreds of children and adults with disabilities through its therapeutic horseback riding program.

Success of the Year -- Lillian Johnson of Fredonia, a favorite at the Resource Center's Work Center Program in Dunkirk, who also has become a volunteer in a nursing home.

She received the Participant of the Year award in 1995.

Elmer Muench Volunteer of the Year -- Kristy and Michael Zimmer of Sinclairville, teens who were judged the outstanding volunteer workers at the Sunny Side Day Camp last summer.

Norma J. Smith Award -- Margaret "Peggy" Hart of Sinclairville, a community living specialist at one of the Resource Center's homes for people with developmental disabilities.

Lifetime Achievement -- The late Carl Cappa of Jamestown, former president and chief executive officer of Crawford Furniture Manufacturing Corp.

Cappa made substantial donations to help people with disabilities and organized a fund-raising golf tournament. He was the chairman of the Resource Center's board of directors at the time of his death.

He was named Humanitarian of the Year in 1998.

Two special awards also were presented.

A Friend of TRC Foundation Award was given to Winifred Dibert, whose most recent donation will refurbish the greenhouse at the Resource Center's Foote Avenue Intermediate Care Facility.

Another award was presented to staff and people with disabilities at the Resource Center's Adult Developmental Services Division, who organized a bake sale on short notice that raised more than $3,000 to aid Red Cross relief efforts in New York City.

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