EATON — L&M Products in Eaton held its fifth annual awards presentation on Tuesday, March 14, an evening which brought cheers of pride, and tears of joy, for those who were honored, as well as those who attended.
Terry Stevens, L&M’s Executive Director, welcomed everyone to the special ceremony.
Customer of the Year was presented to TravelCenters of America by L&M Past Board President Juli Troutman. According to Troutman, TA has worked with L&M for almost four years, and has always shown “great support for individuals with disabilities.” The business has hired five individuals with disabilities, including this year’s Personal Achievement Award winner. Bert Porter, general manager of the restaurant at TA, and Steve Orlab, GM at the store, represented the business in accepting the award.
This year’s Personal Achievement Award was given to Brittany Fisk, who was recognized by L&M’s Cindy Kaufman. According to Kaufman, Fisk is a client who no longer attends L&M but who has in the past. L&M’s Employment Services worked more than seven months to find Fisk the specific job with the schedule that met her requirements, a job search which eventually landed her an interview with TravelCenters of America’s Porter. According to Kaufman, Porter hired Fisk on the spot. Everyone, according to Kaufman, has seen great personal growth in Fisk, who accepted the award with her own words of wisdom for everyone else: “Put your trust in God and you can achieve your dreams,” she said. “I truly believe without God’s help, I wouldn’t have gotten what I wanted.”
Employee of the Year went to Rose Senters, and was presented by Chris Armstrong. According to Armstrong, Senters has been with L&M for eight years, and is employed at Henny Penny.
Retired Judge Wilfrid Dues was honored as L&M’s Community Ambassador of the year, and was honored by Stevens.
According to Stevens, Dues has gone “above and beyond” in promoting and supporting L&M.
Dues accepted the award by making it an honor about everyone else.
“When you receive an award, you like to look from whom you are receiving it and why you are receiving it,” he said. “I have been so proud as a citizen of Preble County for what the county board and L&M has done.”
Dues continued, “I’m getting the award but people like this deserve this award every day.”
Dues instructed all those in attendance to be proud, and gave his own words of advice: ” Every day, you need to look in the mirror, grab something and hand it to yourself, and say ‘I got an award today.’”
L&M is a “gem in this county,” Dues said. “And we should all be proud.”
Years of Service Awards were presented to clients reaching milestones in their time with L&M, ranging from those who have newly started with the company, to those who have been there over 35 years.
Held in L&M’s new home, The Wagner Center, the event included a selection of desserts for refreshment.
L&M Products provides resources for individuals with disabilities in Preble County by offering a “comprehensive array of services intended to promote independence, self-sufficiency, and involvement in community life.”
Reach Eddie Mowen at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH.