Commissioner Amanda Fritz named GABA’s ‘Gateway Citizen of the year’

Also, meet all of our outer East Portland ‘First Responders’ – again honored at this special ceremony held by the Gateway Area Business Association …

Because no one can keep a secret better than these GABA Keystone Kops – Brad Sanchez of Realty Brokers, Jeff Shindler from Shindler Properties, and Damon Curry of Happy Puppy Park – guard the plaque listing all of the organization’s “Citizen of the Year” awardees – including this year’s honoree.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
The monthly meeting of the Gateway Area Business Association (GABA) came early this year, on September 10, at a special gathering held at Realty Brokers’ 111th Square on NE Halsey Street. At this meeting, the “Gateway Citizen of the Year” was announced, and outer East Portland’s “first responders” were honored with a dinner.

A committee that includes David Douglas Superintendent Don Grotting, Parkrose Superintendent Karen Gray, and Portland Christian Superintendent Annette Johnson caucused to determine who, of the many nominees presented, would be named the organization’s “Gateway Citizen of the Year”.

Clifton Lee Powell of Farmer’s Insurance reminds attendees of the values each GABA “Citizen of the Year” must possess to win the honor.

As those attending the ceremony learned, the person chosen to receive this award must have “demonstrated commitment to the community, and advanced its commercial, economic, financial, industrial, safety and civic interests. They met and cooperated with governmental agencies on matters of concern to business and support area Neighborhood Associations and groups. They’ve been outstanding supporters of Gateway Area Business Association and the community.”

Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz accepts the 2011 Gateway “Citizen of the Year” award from GABA president, Clifton Lee Powell.

GABA president Clifton Lee Powell, from Lee Powell Farmer’s Insurance Agency, announced that Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz was chosen the 2011 Gateway “Citizen of the Year”.

“Amanda Fritz has been an advocate for outer East Portland ever since her first day in office,” Powell summarized. “She is a true friend to Gateway, in all senses of the word. She helps business district, the school district – anyone who reaches out to her gets a response.”

It wouldn’t be a GABA event without tireless Gateway booster Fred Sanchez of Realty Brokers and the Keystone Kops also giving flowers – and a rubber chicken – to an honored guest. Today, it’s Commissioner Fritz.

After the ceremony, Commissioner Fritz told us, “The Gateway Area Business Association is the oldest in Oregon. It is an honor and a thrill to be given this award, recognizing that indeed I do care about East Portland. I’m here in East Portland, and I want East Portland to know that they can count on me.”

Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack reflects upon the important services first responders provide to our community.

‘First Responders’ honored
At this event, just one day before “9/11”, GABA officials also honored outer East Portland’s emergency services providers – also known as “first responders” – by serving them a delicious hot lunch at the meeting.

Members of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, accept their GABA “First Responder” plaque, having been presented by Multnomah County Commissioner Judy Shiprack.

Representing the Portland Police Bureau, these East Precinct Officers and Cadets say they appreciate receiving a “First Responder” plaque from GABA. Chief Michael Reese stands on the left.

For Portland Fire & Rescue, the crew of Station 30 stands with their plaque, along with Battalion Chief Chris Babcock.

The Gateway Area Business Association invites guests to their monthly luncheons held the second Wednesday of each month. The meetings are free – but you’ll buy your own lunch or coffee.

Networking starts at 11:30 a.m., and ends promptly at 1:00 p.m. They meet at Izzy’s Pizza, 1307 NE 102nd Avenue (in the Gateway Fred Meyer Shopping Center). For more information, see their website: CLICK HERE.

© 2011 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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