The Merced County Chamber of Commerce announced the winners of the community awards that will be presented at its quarterly luncheon Sept. 30 at the Branding Iron Restaurant.
The chamber also said the keynotespeaker will be author and family farmer, David Mas Masumoto. Masumoto is an organic peach and grape farmer and the author of five books, including "Heirlooms: Letters to the Valley," "Four Seasons in Five Senses," "Harvest Son," "Epitaph For a Peach" and "Wisdom of the Last Farmer."
Receiving the of the Good Business Citizen of the Quarter Award is Kirby Manufacturing. Kirby Manufacturing began in 1946. When Bill and Tom Kirby started Kirby Manufacturing they began by creating small farm implements for their father’s tractor dealership, and within three years had manufactured their first feed wagon. Today, Kirby Manufacturing is a leader in the industry, serving clients throughout the United States as well as Japan, Saudi Arabia, and Mexico. President, Richard M. Kirby said that Kirby Manufacturing is not only a major employer in Merced County, for over 60 years, but it has supported dozens of community organizations, including the FFA, 4H, County Fair, Merced County Agribusiness Committee and many others.
Two people will get the Volunteer of the Quarter Award. They are Jim Farley and Tony Shukle.
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Farley has been a community volunteer throughout the years he was the county director of the UC Cooperative Extension. He volunteers every Thursday morning at the Salvation Army to prepare and serve breakfast to the homeless and needy. He also helps to recruit and train volunteers. Mr. Farley volunteers for many community organizations including the Agribusiness Committee, McSwain Municipal Advisory Council and many others.
Shukle was a science teacher at Mitchell Jr. High for 32 years. He said in a news release that he began his new life as a community volunteer six years ago when he retired. He volunteers for many community events and projects, including the Meals On Wheels delivering meals to home bound seniors, the Food Bank in Merced, the Challenger Learning Center and the Air Museum Restoration hanger at Castle.
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