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Recognizing Those Who Serve

Chamber of Commerce hands out annual service awards.

The buzz at the Vienna-Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce (VTRCC) awards luncheon Thursday, July 14, was Vienna’s designation as fourth best place to live in the country by Money magazine last week.

"I was excited about it, but I wanted a revote," said Billy Thompson, chairman of the VTRCC and owner of All Star Movers. "I think Vienna should be number one."

Thompson, born and raised in Vienna, accepted an award for Business of the Year. All Star movers is heavily involved in community service, said mistress of ceremonies Sen. Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis (R-34), presenting the award to Thompson. Thompson does service work himself, as a mentor in the BeFriend-A-Child program for children at risk of abuse or neglect.

The Optimist Club of Vienna, an organization that supports the youth of the community with programs and scholarships, won the award for Nonprofit of the Year.

"I feel ecstatic about (the award)," said John Jones, president of the Optimist Club, who had accepted the award. "What we’re doing for the community as it relates to kids is being recognized by someone."

Jones, a football coach and soccer referee, had always loved working with children, and when friends invited him along to a dinner meeting of the Optimist Club four and a half years ago, he decided to join.

"I’ve always been engaged with kids one way or another," said Jones. "The club was just one more way to connect."

Several of Jones’ Optimist Club colleagues were there at the awards luncheon, among them Vienna Councilmember Laurie G. Cole, Del. Steve Shannon (D-35), and Lifetime Service Award winner Julian Johnson, who has been a member of the club since 1967.

Bill Daly, principal at Rees, Broome & Diaz, PC, won the Chairman’s Award. He and his wife Lynne L’Hommedieu brought along Nicholas, 9, and 1-year-old Charlotte, two of his four children, to watch him receive the award.

Daly is a member of the VTRCC board of directors and chairs the Community Affairs Committee. He helped chair the Casino Night Committee for VTRCC’s biggest event of the year, and worked on the parade float for the Halloween Parade, which he also helped organize.

"My kids liked that job a lot," said Daly.

"He went over and above what was required every year," said Maris Angolia, last year’s VTRCC chairman, who selected Daly as the award recipient. "He made my job a lot easier, I could bounce ideas off him. He would listen and offer advice."

"It’s a great organization," Daly said of the VTRCC. "It’s a great way to meet people, especially in Vienna. It’s nice to see the camaraderie here, to see people having fun."

Other honorees included Carole Wolfand, owner of Vienna Paint & Decorating, who won Business Person of the Year; Katherine Hutt of Nautilus Communications, who won Entrepreneur of the Year; Russell Brannan of United Stor-All, as New Member of the Year; and D.H. Scarborough of Johnson & Scarborough CPAs, who won the Lifetime Service award along with Johnson.