HARTVILLE The Lake Township Chamber of Commerce recognized its 2019 award recipients during its annual Leadership and Awards Dinner on Feb. 25 at the Hartville Kitchen. In addition to the awards, the Chamber also introduced its new president, Curtis Smith.

State Representative Reggie Stoltzfus was also on hand to congratulate the recipients and to help hand out the awards. All of the recipients thanked everyone for their awards and each gave a brief speech. Below are this year’s recipients along with published statements made by each.

Business Professional of the Year: John Arnold, Arnold Funeral Home, in recognition of exemplary business practices, excellent client relations, and participation in civic improvement and community service projects.

"I have been blessed to have the opportunity to work in Lake Township and become a part of this community. There are so many opportunities in this community to give back and serve the people who have supported my business,” stated Arnold.

Entrepreneurs of the Year: Brad and Craig Pavlak, Country Clean Car Wash, in recognition of community investment, a spirit of innovation, and longevity as local business owners.

“Doing business can be rewarding when you enjoy what you do, enjoy where you are doing business, and enjoy where you live,” stated Brad.

Economic Impact: Eric Bontrager, Heritage Truck Equipment, in recognition of the positive economic impact the relocation of Heritage Truck Equipment has had on the Village of Hartville and Lake Township.

According to owner Bontrager, company long term goals include continuing engineering, and improving products and processes to be a leader in the body building industry. He credits his success to doing the basics better and producing quality products with a major focus on customer service before, during, and after sale. “We have innovative, hardworking employees in every area of the business and rely on their dedication to make the entire team successful,” added Bontrager.

Community Collaboration: Megan Wise, Christa Kozy, Cindy Billings, in recognition of outstanding efforts toward earning Hartville the title “Best Hometown for 2019-20” by Ohio Magazine. Megan, Christa, and Cindy are community members who helped lead an effort culminating in Hartville recently being chosen as a Best Hometown by Ohio Magazine.

“We helped facilitate collaboration between the schools, business owners, and the community. We try to do this in small amounts on a daily basis,” said Megan.

Christa added, “Collaboration works here because of values our community was founded upon. People treat one another with respect and kindness, and when a need presents itself, they take care of one another. Our community is now "on the map" for potential visitors to discover.”

Community Impact: Annette Mignano, in recognition of the Consumers National Bank - Hartville branch’s extraordinary commitment to Making A Difference in our community.

Annette joined Consumers National Bank in 2018 as a Sales and Service Relationship Manager at the Hartville branch.

“I have always been driven to give back and pay it forward.  Having a community that believes in many of the same values keeps me motivated.  Having the support of Consumers National Bank leadership and my team here at Consumers is also a true blessing,” stated Mignano.

Educator of the Year: Jenny Neel, Lake Center Christian School, in recognition of exemplary work as a Gifted Intervention Specialist and Gifted and Talented Enrichment (GATE) teacher at Lake Center Christian School.

“My role is to respond to each group of students specifically,” Need said. “Each class has different needs and interests, so my job is to connect with and serve them to the best of my ability. I focus on creating a safe yet challenging environment for each student with appropriate support in place.”

Legacy Award: Marion Coblentz, Hartville MarketPlace, in recognition of years of exemplary business practices, community service, and commitment to the Lake Township area.

“To sum up dad, he loves people and he worked to help people. It didn’t matter if the things he was helping people with had to do with business or personal life - his goal was to help them succeed,” said Marion’s son, Zach Coblentz.