Beth and Tom Gilchrist were named Volunteers of the Year by Moffat County United Way, Moffat County and the city of Craig on Thursday at its annual volunteer awards luncheon. County Commissioner Tom Gray also presented eight other residents with awards for serving several years on local volunteer boards.

Photo by Hans Hallgren

Beth and Tom Gilchrist were named Volunteers of the Year by Moffat County United Way, Moffat County and the city of Craig on Thursday at its annual volunteer awards luncheon. County Commissioner Tom Gray also presented eight other residents with awards for serving several years on local volunteer boards.

Beth, Tom Gilchrist named 2008 Volunteers of the Year

Other award winners

Moffat County United Way, Moffat County and the city of Craig honored eight residents Thursday for their continued community service.

They are:

• Jim Meineke, 35 years with the Craig Planning and Zoning Commission

• Delaine Voloshin, 25 years with the Museum of Northwest Colorado board

• John Ponikvar, 20 years with the 14th Judicial District Community Corrections board

• Karl Huntsman, 15 years with the Moffat County Fair board

• Wilma Taylor-Baker, 15 years with the Museum of Northwest Colorado board

• Shandy Deakins, 10 years with the Moffat County Fair board

• Betsy Peck, 10 years with the Moffat County Housing Authority board

• Kim Williams, 10 years with the Moffat County Housing Authority board

— Beth and Tom Gilchrist don't think they stand out from others in their community.

Their modesty did not keep Moffat County United Way, Moffat County and the city of Craig from naming the couple 2008 volunteers of the year at United Way's volunteer awards luncheon Thursday afternoon.

The pair weren't able to be there and hear Mayor Don Jones' words of praise and the applause of the 100 residents gathered to honor them. Tom recently underwent back surgery in Grand Junction and the couple was driving back to Craig when they heard the news.

"Well, that's cool," Beth said. "I don't know why they chose us. We haven't done much more than anybody else."

In his address, Jones said volunteers are unique people who realize that giving is an investment and not an expense.

In the case of the Gilchrists, Jones cited the "hundreds of hours planning, organizing and working" the various Craig Centennial events scattered throughout last year, Beth's work with the Moffat County Housing Authority board, Tom's eight years on Craig City Council, his service to the Craig/Moffat County Airport board and the couple's near-endless assistance with Craig Sea Sharks.

The community relies on people like that, he said.

"You can have all the county commissioners, you can have the city council, all the elected officials, all the (government) department heads, but if you did not have the volunteers that we have, the city of Craig would not be where it is today," Jones said.

Beth and Tom never took part in anything to be lauded. They do what they can, Tom said, and nothing they have done has been difficult.

"We really do have a great town," Tom said. "It's really easy for someone that lives there to become involved. You can help, you can learn, you can make a difference."

"I think it's just giving back what you gained from the community," Beth said. "We feel lucky to live there."

With the Centennial, she remembered her parents being active in Craig's past milestones. She was a child then, but now as an adult she wanted to help the community relive what was a great memory from her childhood.

Beth's children were lucky enough to live in a place that has a youth group like the Sea Sharks, she added, so she thought she could spend some time with her kids and help carry on the tradition at the same time.

They're little things, really, Beth said.

There's not much else to it, added Tom.

"It's our town," he said.

Comments

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.