LIMA — William Timmermeister was awarded The Ohio State University-Lima’s Violet I. Meek Town and Gown Award on Thursday evening.
Meek said the selection committee chose Timmermeister, a 1967 OSU graduate, because of his long history serving the community.
“If you are looking for a public citizen, who also is an avid book lover, you could hardly do better,” Meek said. “It’s important for the university to recognize those people here whose goals are the same as ours. When we find somebody who helps us, we can’t say anything but, ‘Hooray and keep doing it!’”
The award honors those who personify the idea of “disciplina in civitatem,” or education for citizenship, the motto for OSU.
One of Timmermeister’s most noticeable accolades is the formation of the Lima Rotary Club non-traditional student scholarship program in the 1999-2000 school year. Last month, the 1,002th scholarship was awarded, and another 14 will be presented later this month.
“The new president of the Rotary asked me to order all past presidents together and come up with a new project for our club that would benefit the community,” Timmermeister said. “We’ve helped a lot of people, and we’re still doing it.”
He explained the scholarships are for students who live or work in Allen County and are pursuing a degree or certification in a county institution.
From 2009 to 2018, OSU-Lima students have received more than $65,000 from the scholarship. More than $730,000 has been awarded to students overall since its inception.
“A fairly sizable number of our students are returning (non-traditional) students,” Meek said. “We had a young woman who raised her own family, and she ended up with a bachelor’s degree in business. The last time I found her, she was the VP of her company. That wouldn’t have happened, and she said that. We find people who can be who they really are because somebody helped them get back (to school).”
Timmermeister, longtime owner of Lima Auto Mall, has also been involved with several community organizations, including the Allen County Museum and Historical Society, Better Business Bureau, United Way of Greater Lima, Lima Campus Citizens Advisory Committee, Rhodes State College, Lima Memorial Health System and Foundation, Allen Economic Development Group and Lima Family YMCA.
Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.