Since opening in 2004, the annual anniversary celebration of The Commons in Eastport has had an element that is unique — rather than patting themselves on the back for another year of operation, the company conveys Common Good Awards on a selection of individuals and organizations that have made important contributions to the quality of life in Eastport. “Its a way to highlight community engagement and leadership commitment that makes our city a great place to live and visit,” says Linda Cross Godfrey, the partner who coordinates the event for the company.
The quartet of partners, Godfrey, Meg McGarvey, Nancy Asante and Suzanne Crawford collectively nominate and then select each year’s class of winners.
“Categories for the awards reflect slices of community life that when present provide a positive and productive living environment and contribute to a stronger future for all of us,” says partner McGarvey. Since opening in 2004, the company has conveyed 62 Common Good Awards.
Awards are conveyed in eleven areas, with a new 12th area added to the 2013 ceremony. Eleven individuals or groups will be handed their Common Good Award in the categories of Arts and Culture Achievement, Civic Service, Collaborative Success, Community Building, Educational Excellence, Entrepreneurism and Innovation, Family Business Success, Health Care and Compassion, Outstanding Community Youth, The Rising Tide Award for Past, Present and Future Community Commitment.
The capstone citation, The Eleanor Roosevelt Outstanding Woman Leader Award, applauds a winner who is living out the company’s official quote by Eleanor Roosevelt, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”
While annual winners are notified and invited to attend the Anniversary Open House to receive their award, the partners keep the winning categories secret from the recipients to add a little suspense to the celebration.
The 2013 ceremony includes a new category, Shining a Statewide Spotlight Award. This award will highlight as well as thank a person, organization or agency that has a statewide mission and influence and has used its position, resources, expertise and broad reach to the benefit of the Eastport community.
“Since most winners are either residents of Eastport proper, or Washington County, keeping the winner of the “Shining a Statewide Spotlight Award” isn’t really a secret once the invitations are issued, “ said Godfrey. “We are totally thrilled this year to present our first annual award in this broader category to Nancy Smith, Executive Director of GrowSmart Maine”, said Godfrey.
“In awarding this tribute to Nancy Smith”, Godfrey continued, “we are also honoring the organization as a whole and thanking their board and supporters for all of their leadership and expert work. We’ll be more specific during the ceremony, yet invite the public to view Story #4 on the great video produced by GrowSmart Maine for their 2012 Summit. “ Godfrey concluded. The video, which will be playing throughout the May 5th celebration in Eastport can be viewed at http://vimeo.com/channels/growsmartmaine/51756710.
The public is invited to share in the celebration and granting of the Common Good Awards by attending the 9th Anniversary Open House, 2:00 -4:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 5th. Learn more about The Commons, located in the 1887 Mincton Building in Eastport’s historic downtown and offering a gallery featuring 100 area artisans, two glorious seaside rental condos and office space which houses Eat Local Eastport operations and Downeast Massage Therapy Services, by visiting www.thecommonseastport.com