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Barberton Foundation honors Outstanding Citizens

UPublish story by Laura Hoopes Ebie

Terry and Patricia Taylor, Don and Rhonda Wood, and the late Robert C. Frutchey will be honored Thursday, Nov.7, at the Barberton Community Foundation’s 14th annual Community Recognition Dinner at Prime 93.

“The highlight of the year is when we take time to honor the outstanding efforts of people who significantly impact our community,” said Foundation Director Larry Lallo. “These extraordinary men and women remind us to look outside ourselves to support and serve those around us.”

Unique to the event this year, the Foundation will present a memorial award, posthumously honoring Robert C. Frutchey. Ever passionate about music, education, and Barberton, Frutchey held the position of Principal French Horn of the Akron Symphony for 42 years, served as director of music for various churches, and as an Assistant Scout Master for Troop 100, where he created their Drum and Bugle Corp. He was an active member and past President of the Magic City Kiwanis Club, with one of his favorite projects being the Lake Anna Gazebo. He volunteered for the annual Cancer Survivor Walk, read regularly to children at Memorial School, and participated in community activities as often as he could. Despite all of his other involvement, Frutchey is best known in Barberton for always striving to bring out the best in students, during his 32 year dedication to the city’s youth as a teacher and band director for Barberton City Schools.

Outstanding Citizens Don and Rhonda Wood have been serving together for decades. Together, their current volunteering efforts include the Lake Anna YMCA reverse raffle, Bridgestone Invitational Golf Tournament, Tour de Barberton, Relay for Life, Sweetheart Ball & Cotillion, Greynolds Classic, and Mum Fest. The Woods have served numerous organizations over the years including Barberton All Sports Boosters, Junior Achievement, Boy Scout Troop 101, PTA, St. Andrew’s Ladies Guild and many more. Individually, Rhonda dedicates her time to NDS and the Esther Ryan Shoe Fund, while Don serves on the City of Barberton Planning Commission, Lake Anna YMCA Advisory board, and in Magic City Kiwanis Club.

“The Woods’ non-stop volunteerism is truly remarkable,” said Foundation Director Larry Lallo. “It will be an honor to recognize their tireless service.”

Terry and Pat Taylor will also be honored with the Foundation’s Outstanding Citizen Award. They are respectively CEO and Vice President of the Wright Tool Company which manufactures heavy-duty hand tools sold throughout the world. Wright Tool provides numerous jobs in the city of Barberton and has contributed as a corporate citizen in the community for over 80 years. Frequently donating local events, Wright Tool’s sponsorships help make possible the many programs the community enjoys. As individuals, Terry and Pat’s quiet philanthropy provides overwhelming support to local programs, events, and organizations. Both are very involved in the Barberton community, including years of service to the Barberton Rotary, South Summit Chamber of Commerce, American Heart Association, Salvation Army, Barberton Area United Way Board, and Lake Anna YMCA.

Members of the community were invited to submit nominations for the awards created in 2000 to honor the invaluable contributions of individuals and organizations to the city of Barberton. Selections were made by an independent committee of community and civic leaders: Carol Deuber, Shirley Bauschlinger, Craig Megyes, Gary Matney, Larry Okolish, Jason Ondrus, and Elwood Palmer.

The Community Recognition event begins with a cocktail reception 6 p.m. followed by dinner at 7 p.m. Guests will enjoy a program led by local theater talents Dennis O’Connell and Holly Barkdoll starting at 7:45, followed by the presentation of the Memorial and Outstanding Citizen Awards.

Tickets for the Nov. 7 event start at $35 per person and are available online at Corporate sponsorships are still available. For more information, contact Laura Hoopes Ebie at (330) 745-5995.

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