Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Gun rights activist honored by NRA

Good things happening

Within a year's time, Denny Watkins probably talks to more politicians than anybody, and he is not a lobbyist.

The 49-year-old Madison Township man does it to keep them aware of the Second Amendment, protecting the right to keep and bear arms. And he manages to do this kind of volunteer work while he holds down his 40-hour-a-week job as a roll shop worker for AK Steel in Middletown.

He prefers to be known as a civil liberties and a civil rights activist.

For his efforts, Watkins was named recipient of the National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action's Jay M. Littlefield Memorial Volunteer of the Year Award for 2002.

The award was presented this fall at an NRA board of directors meeting in Arlington, Va.

"This is quite an achievement for me as it is a national award,'' Watkins said.

"I constantly talk with state legislators, congressmen, speakers of the house and the presidents of the legislative bodies.''

In 2001, Watkins volunteered to become Ohio's 8th Congressional District NRA-ILA election volunteer coordinator, which got him involved in grass roots activities.

"His dedication to the Second Amendment and pro-gun causes often goes above and beyond the call of duty,'' said Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA-ILA.

Holiday candy tins donated

Blue holiday candy tins - 15,000 of them featuring Santa and his sleigh - arrived at the Sharonville Community Resource Center the week before Christmas.

They came just in time to get on the Christmas list of nonprofit organizations to fill with new candy or new products.

The tins were donated by Perfetti Van Melle of Erlanger, which makes Mentos and other candies.

"Perfetti Van Melle is a first-time donor to the CRC, and we are so pleased for this wonderful seasonal present that will benefit nonprofits this year and the next,'' said Molly Lohr executive director of CRC. "The size and shape of this donation make it truly memorable, and organizations throughout our area will put these to good use.''

Guild gives Goodwill $7,500

And the Christmas giving goes on. Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries received a $7,500 check from its Service Guild to be used for programs and services to help men and women with disabilities.

Party music entertains moms

The Le Rich Music Co., for the 12th time, provided music for a party at the Drake Center.

The party was sponsored by Bernice Marshall, Paula Willoughby and Mary Thomas, members of Mothers of Special Children.

Positively kids: Scholarships awarded

ABS Business Products Inc. and Toshiba provide $1,000 Grant C. Alexander Scholarships annually to graduating seniors who have overcome hardships, remained active in their school/community, maintained a respectful grade-point average and have written an essay.

The scholarships were founded to increase awareness concerning Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

For each scholarship awarded, ABS and Toshiba match the value to the parent project, the Muscular Dystrophy organization.

This year's recipients were Misty Mulvaney, a Goshen High School graduate who plans to major in nursing at the University of Cincinnati; Deanna Lewis, a Northwest High School graduate who plans to study massage therapy at the Cincinnati School of Medical Massage; Tillie Thomsen, a Lakota East High School graduate who will major in pre-med at Miami University; and Sara Morner, a Badin High School graduate who will major in education at Ohio State University.

Art Academy grad cited

Adam Waugh of Anderson Township graduated from the Art Academy of Cincinnati with a fine arts degree in digital design.

While studying, he was recognized with two awards in the field of design.

He won first place in the American Institute of Graphic Arts Portfolio Review, which included portfolio submissions from regional art and graphic design schools.

He also received the 2003 Stephen H. Wilder Traveling Scholarship, which provides financial support for student educational and artistic growth by enabling graduates to travel.

Waugh is interning at HOW Magazine and freelancing for the Cartoon Network and a design studio in Orlando, Fla.

To submit an item, call 755-4165.

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