Awards of Excellence recipients announced at special ceremony

The MotorCities 2015 Awards of Excellence Winners were announced during a special ceremony held Tuesday, Nov. 10, at the State Capitol Building in Lansing. From left are John Beck, Lansing Stewardship Community-MotorCities Partnership; Deborah Hartwick, Oh These Irish Hills Map and Tourist Guide; Nancy Darga, Executive Director of the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant; and MotorCities Executive Director Shawn Pomaville. (Photos by Austen Smith)


On Tuesday, Nov. 10, the winners of the 2015 MotorCities National Heritage Area Awards of Excellence were announced during a special ceremony at the State Capitol Building in Lansing. Projects and individuals in three categories - auto heritage preservation, education/interpretation and tourism - were presented and honored by a number of state legislators who attended the annual event.

The following projects were announced as the grand winners:
Preservation: Window Restoration Team at the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant; award accepted by Board Member and Volunteer, Arthur Pope

Tourism: Oh These Irish Hills Map and Tourist Guide; award accepted by volunteer Deborah Hartwick

Education/Interpretation: Lansing Stewardship Community-MotorCities Partnership; award accepted by John Beck representing Local 602 and others as part of the Lansing Stewardship group.

There were a total of nine finalists for the inaugural Awards of Excellence, selected from nearly 30 total nominations.

Click here to see all the finalists

The day's program was kicked off by MotorCities Board of Directors Chairman Robert Kreipke, Corporate Historian and Creative Manager for the Ford Motor Co., who introduced Eric Shreffler, managing director of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's Automotive Office, representing Gov. Rick Snyder. Shreffler talked about the importance of connecting the state's automotive past to its present, and presented the official Governor's Proclamation declaring Nov. 10 as Michigan Auto Heritage Day.

Sen. Steve Bieda (D-Warren) had the privilege of presenting two Milestone Awards, honoring founding partners of the MotorCities which remains the state's only National Heritage Area. The first was bestowed to The Hon. John Dingell, who sponsored the original legislation for the Automobile National Heritage Area Act in 1998, and the second award was presented to Norwood H. Jewell, vice president of the International Union, UAW. The UAW was one of several co-founders of the MotorCities with others being The Ford Motor Co. and General Motors.

At that point, Executive Director Shawn Pomaville took center stage to present the Awards of Excellence portion of the program. Announcing awards for the Oh These Irish Hills Guide were Sen. Dale Zorn (R-Ida) and Rep. Brett Roberts (R-Eaton); and presenting the award for the Lansing group was Sen. Curtis Hertel (D-Meridian Township).

The program was concluded when Chair Robert Kreipke congratulated the winners and the finalists and invited all for a catered lunch in the historic Rotunda Hallways.

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MotorCities National Heritage Area
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