Community awards are well deserved

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 10, 2000

Nancy Idland will tell you that the presentation of the first-ever Great Greenville Main Street Award was the highlight of the Main Street gathering held Thursday on the Martin House Bed and Breakfast lawn. And it was pretty exciting when Jo Weitman, owner of The Martin House, was given the award.

The organization conceived the award this year to honor a community member for their contribution to the revitalization of downtown Greenville.

But that excitement was equaled later in the evening when Idland landed a special award of her own, the John D. Murphy Award, presented by the Greenville Jaycees to the individual recognized by the group as Greenville’s citizen of the year.

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How fitting is it that these two awards ended up in the hands of two ladies who have given tirelessly to the spirit of working together for a common goal, without concern for who gets the credit. That’s uncommon.

Weitman was honored for her efforts in renovating the former H. Porter Martin home into a bed and breakfast and the positive impact that has had on downtown Greenville.

Weitman was presented with a resolution by Idland and Main Street president Pete Hamilton. Idland read the resolution the crowd of more than 100.

&uot;Ms. Weitman has exhibited a vision for the community of Greenville Main Street and has made a positive contribution to the revitalization of downtown,&uot; she read. &uot;She has shown great foresight in undertaking a successful project in renovating the former H. Porter Martin home into a popular downtown bed and breakfast.&uot;

The H. Porter Martin home is a very important landmark in town which dates back to 1853. As the first home in Greenville to have electric lights, the home deserved preserving. Anyone who has had a chance to tour the Martin House will tell you that Jo has really done a great job with it.

Then Idland got her turn in the spotlight when Greenville Jaycees Ronnie Steadham and Brian Reynolds announced she was the club’s citizen of the year. Steadham commended Idland for her tireless efforts for the betterment of Greenville.

&uot;I am honored to receive this award, but anytime anyone gets an award like this they can always point to the people around them as the reason,&uot; Idland said as she accepted the award. &uot;It is great to be recognized for doing something for a community that you love, with people that you love, and hopefully all of us are doing something to make Greenville a better place to live.&uot;

Anybody can say those words, but with Nancy you know they come from the heart.

It's easy to paint a picture of who you want to be, and awards like this remind us of this. It borders on being inspirational. Maybe some of us can use this as a springboard to do more to help those around us.

Idland and Weitman are both wonderful ladies, and I know they’re both proud of their awards. Whether you could get them to admit to that pride is another story. I am proud to know both of them, and was happy to share their big evening with them.

Eric Bishop is publisher of the Greenville Advocate. His column appears on Saturday.