Although Forestville Road Elementary School Teacher Assistant Otis Agnew was surprised to receive the “2014 Bronze Knight Citizen of the Year,” the Wendell resident said his work isn’t done yet.
During the Knightdale Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Knight of Awards” banquet, hosted this year at The Andrews Center at WakeMed, small businesses, employees and citizens are recognized for outstanding work in the community.
Agnew was nominated and chosen because of his work with the School Safety Patrol’s Bike Rodeo, said Awards Committee member Donna Binkauskas. During the event, students can bring their bikes to be checked for safety and their helmets fitted. They can also maneuver an eight-station obstacle course assisted by police officers.
Agnew said he wants to teach students the importance of community service starting in elementary school and throughout middle and high school.
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Coming up, he said he is working on involvement with the Relay for Life this year and even a scholarship program for college students who have participated in the School Safety Patrol.
And in December, Agnew gathered several coworkers together to support a fellow teacher in her fight against Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, by all shaving their heads after school one day.
“She’s young,” Agnew said. “I see her every morning, and I give her a high-five.”
“This is an individual who cares about his community enough to get others involved, start a ball rolling, and seeing it through to the end,” Binkauskas said.
“It’s just what I do,” Agnew said simply. “It’s part of me.”
The nonprofit of the year was the Kiwanis Club of Knightdale and the Large Business Award went to Kioti Tractor.
The Town of Knightdale Public Works Operations Supervisor Reed Alexander received town employee of the year.
“His work ethic has been described as a marker of excellence for others to achieve, making certain projects are always moving forward as expected,” Binkauskas said.
Knightdale Elementary School second-grade teacher Amy Batey accepted the Educator of the Year award, given to her becuase of her “positive influence” on all those in school and her leadership as a “mentor to new teachers.”
Segmia Tohnya at Knightdale Pharmacy received the EDGE Small Business of the Year award from among a group of four nominees, and the Chamber Ambassador for the Year went to Jan Baker with Carolina Clipz Magazine.
Mike Wheless of WQDR deejayed the event and N.C. State Football Coach Dave Doeren served as keynote speaker, entertaining attendees with his insights on cold practice days, hard-working players and a peek into the upcoming season.
2014 Chamber President Josh Francis passed the gavel to this year’s president, Jeff Eddins of Eddins Builders. Nathan Ray of Supreme Martial Arts & Fitness is the 2016 President-elect.