Chamber awards local man who helps others as a way of life

Here's a rundown of the prior Citizen of the Year award winners, according to the Chamber records:

Kathy Quintal and Bunny Gonzales were jointly awarded in 2008 for enriching the lives of hundreds of area children. For Gonzales, it was her 22 years of year-round work on Operation Reindeer, by distributing food and toys to children in needy families at Christmas time. For Quintal, the award was prompted by her decades of work on behalf of a variety of local community organizations, primarily Girl Scouts, Little League, the local school booster club, and the Warrensburg Chamber of Commerce.

For 2007, Jan Higgins was awarded for her work in youth development through her decades of operating the Hobby Horse preschool, teaching youngsters about caring for others and the elements of social responsibility.

Lenore Smith was awarded in 2006, primarily for her work - a lot of it hands-on effort - in buying up distressed properties and rehabilitating them into attractive residences and apartment houses. Her rehabilitation and stewardship of properties has been a substantial influence in beautifying the town.

In 2000, Andrew Sprague was awarded for his work in youth character development. Sprague worked for Warren County Cornell Cooperative Extension, mentoring a variety of youth groups. Sprague's work leading wilderness expeditions was considered instrumental in building self-reliance and resourcefulness in hundreds of area youth.

Town Councilman and local ranch owner Austin Perry was awarded in 1996. He was instrumental in bringing affordable senior housing to town, as well as boosting medical services locally and in the southern Adirondacks through his work on behalf of Hudson Headwaters Health Network. He was also an effective advocate for seniors' issues in the area.

Jerry Quintal, owner of famed Oscar's Meats in Warrensburg was awarded in 1995. Quintal was recognized for helping with Chamber projects and community events, as well as supporting various local charities. Quintal's claim to fame in later years was his tenure as town supervisor from 1998 through 2005. During his terms, he launched the Warrensburg Industrial Park, initiated the town curfew and boosted police protection in town. Also, he was a leader locally in Internet marketing for Oscar's, familiarizing people internationally with Warrensburg.

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