LIMA — When Bob Friedman heard he had received the Shirley Daley Community Leadership Award — his second award of the night — he couldn’t contain his surprise, nor the honor he felt.
“It is really a great honor and thank you so much,” Friedman said at the podium at the Lima-Allen County Neighborhoods in Partnership annual dinner held Thursday night.
While Friedman rarely finds his work highlighted, the community member is well-known throughout the city for his active participation volunteering at many LACNIP functions, leading the Boulevard Neighborhood Association, organizing community events and keeping an eye on Lima City Council. Lima Neighborhood Specialist Autumn Swanson nominated him for the award.
Friedman took home both the Outstanding Service Award and the Shirley Daley Community Leadership Award, which he shared with Tracie Sanchez, the owner of Lima Pallet.
“There’s just so much negativity out there about Lima, I just want to be a positive force,” Friedman explained.
Swanson said, “He’s been in attendance for every volunteer activity that we host. He’s been at all the fundraisers, all the retreats, the classes, always learning how to be a better leader. I know if we had more Bobs out there, Lima would be one off the best cities on earth.”
During the Thursday night dinner, the community nonprofit celebrated its 25th year by recognizing community members and organizations for their “exceptional service and dedication.”
Since starting in 1993, LACNIP has played a large part in the community, organizing a multitude of events and encouraging civic activism. Highlights of its 25-year history include City Wide Pride, the Ottawa River Cleanup, the establishment of community gardens, the creation of Lima’s mascot Beanie, National Night Out, Lima Sprouts and the creation of a multi-cultural festival, which is slated to be brought back in 2020.
“I think tonight is such a good exclamation point for all of us, to thank folks and celebrate,” Mayor David Berger said as one of the night’s speakers. “As mayor of the city, I want to thank you for what you do and it makes a difference. So have at.”
Award winners from the night include:
• Bittersweet at Betty’s Farm: Good Neighbor Group Award
• The Trophy Center: Good Neighbor Business Award
• Gail Lovett: Good Neighbor Individual Award
• Bob Friedman: Outstanding Service Award
• Jessie Roark: Outstanding Service Award
• Tracie Sanchez and Bob Friedman: The Shirley Daley Community Leadership Award
“It’s been a wonderful year at LACNIP. We’ve had a lot of fun in our neighborhoods and in our community,” LACNIP President Jessie Roark said. “We expect 2020 to be just as busy.”
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.