The community building was packed Friday night as Mount Shasta’s Chamber of Commerce named its citizen, business, educator and not for profit organization of the year.
“This is an amazing community,” said Citizen of the Year Dr. David Holst. “It’s an honor to be recognized in such a giving community.”
Siskiyou Arts Council executive director said it’s “humbling to be recognized by a jury of your peers” as she accepted the Not for Profit of the Year award.
Mount Shasta High School teacher Toni Erro received the Exceptional Educator of the Year Award, the Mt. Shasta Ski Park  was named Business of the Year, and Mount Shasta High School senior Sydney Miller received the Outstanding Youth Pride Award.
Also nominated for Citizen of the Year were Lorie Saunders and Bill Miesse. Saunders is an avid volunteer for several Mount Shasta organizations, including the Mount Shasta Beautification Committee and the Siskiyou Domestic Violence and Crisis Center. Miesse spent 25 years working toward “The Art of Mt. Shasta,” an exhibition that opened at Turtle Bay Exploration Park in Redding.
Nominees for Non-Profit of the Year included Hearts of Mt. Shasta, JEDI, North Valley Catholic Social Services and SSNIP (the Siskiyou Spay & Neuter Incentive Program.)
Curves, Seven Suns and Snip’N Save were also nominated for Business of the Year.
Following is information about the many endeavors each of the award winners have been involved in, as presented during the banquet:
Dr. David Holst
The Citizen of the Year Award is give to an individual resident of Mount Shasta or its sphere of influence. The nominees have made significant contributions to the local community during the last year.
Dr. Holst moved to Mount Shasta in 1995 to work with Siskiyou Medical Group as a family physician specializing in obstetrics and has since delivered over 750 babies in Siskiyou County.
Holst served as the Chief of Physicians Committee for three years and as Chief of Staff for two years at Mercy Medical Center. He is also a volunteer physician for the crisis pregnancy center.
In his involvement with the community youth he coaches baseball and soccer, hosts a weekly community youth group and hosts 5th Quarters, a post game party for all Mount Shasta High School students.
As a board member of the Good Samaritan’s Home Ministries, Holst went on a mission trip to India in Nov. 2008 to support their children’s home and medical clinic, widows and lepers.
As a member of the First Baptist Church, Dr. Holst teaches Sunday school, acts as a high school youth group leader, provides services to the homeless and leads mission trips to Mexico.
Siskiyou Arts Council
The Not For Profit of the Year Award is granted to a community organization who has significantly contributed to the community in terms of economic impact, lasting legacy as well as local, regional and national exposure.
The Siskiyou Arts Council has been a leading force in Siskiyou County since 1972 in encouraging and enabling artistic expression. Their mission is “to value creativity, promote education and excite our community’s participation in the visual, performing and literary arts.”
To this end, SAC has organized, funded and sponsored numerous art shows, performances and community events. Over 300 people, children and adults, participated in creating the Peace Mural located behind the Visitor’s Center.
In early 2009, SAC opened Siskiyou Arts Council Gallery & Cultural Center at 418 N. Mt. Shasta Blvd. Within they have hosted art exhibits including the Patron of the Arts High School Invitational, Bras for a Cause, Artists of the Month and various art related workshops.
SAC has also been fundamental with Poetry Out Loud, Art Matters, the Siskiyou Arts Bus, Toddler Movement and Music, Juvenile Justice and the Family Fun Night Talent Show.
SAC has awarded Siskiyou County artists over $3,500 in grants in 2009 through their Grants and Gifts program.
Toni Erro
Toni Erro has been teaching at Mount Shasta High School for 15 years. During that time, she has taught freshman English, senior honors English and creative writing.
She was born in Weed, and attended school there from kindergarten through high school. Erro always knew she wanted to be a teacher and, as a result, she graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in English from Southern Oregon University. Obtaining her secondary credential and multiple subject credential was especially enjoyable because she completed her student teaching in the Mount Shasta school system.
Erro said she feels very fortunate to have lived here and to have been able to raise her family in Siskiyou County.
Erro’s husband, Mark, is also a teacher at MSHS. He teaches public speaking and physical education. They have four children and two grandchildren.
Mt. Shasta Ski Park
The Business of the Year Award is bestowed to a local business whose owner, owners or manager and staff offer the public excellent service, merchandise and friendly attitudes. All nominees must be a Chamber member in good standing.
The Mt. Shasta Ski Park is one of the last family owned ski parks in the nation. Everyone who visits the park has access to the owners and is greeted with a smile and genuine appreciation for their patronage. They offer ski and board runs for every level of ability and age group at a fair price and outstanding conditions.
The Mt. Shasta Ski Park employs approximately 300 people from our community, giving the locals income that they in turn support other local businesses with. The Mt. Shasta Ski Park brings in patronage from all over California and neighboring states. They support all area high schools and host the State Championships.
Sydney Miller
The Outstanding Youth Pride Award is awarded to a youth in the Mt. Shasta area who exhibits good sportsmanship, dedication to goals, community mindfulness and/or leadership abilities.
Sydney has lived in Mount Shasta for all of her 17 years. She is an attendant to Innerspark, the California State Summer School for the Arts, a four year counselor at French Creek Outdoor School, the head choreographer for two Sisson Middle School plays, a Link Crew menton and peer advisor, ETS student ambassador, Associated Student Body activities director, and is the director and founder of the Bear Necessities, a community service program at MSHS.
Sydney has worked at the Siskiyou Ice Rink and at the Echo Lake Chalet as a licensed for-hire boat taxi driver for the state of California.
Sydney was honored as Rotary Student of the Month in December 2009, and has a total of 450 hours of community service during her four years of high school.