Kiwanis presents Hixson awards and new officers

California Kiwanis Past President Dr. Peter Kurowski, left, presents outgoing President Eugene Wickham with a plaque in recognition of his service.

California Kiwanis Past President Dr. Peter Kurowski, left, presents outgoing President Eugene Wickham with a plaque in recognition of his service. Photo by David Wilson.

Special recognition was given to two individuals and the new officers were installed at the California Kiwanis Club meeting Monday, Oct. 14, held at St. Paul's Lutheran Church.

Following a dinner of steaks grilled by Kent Mannering and side dishes prepared by the cooks of St. Paul, Kiwanis President Eugene Wickham called the meeting to order and presented The George F. Hixson Award to two individuals for their service to the organization.

Presented with the award were Jeff Shackleford and Dr. Norman Rohrbach.

Shackleford, originally from Iberia, gained an interest in his life's work in radio broadcasting during a visit to an uncle in Corpus Christi, Texas.

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At the California Kiwanis meeting Monday, Oct. 14, Jeff Shackleford was presented with The George F. Hixson Award for service to the organization.

He has been in California for more than 30 years and is a past prsident of California Kiwanis. His son Dawson was present for the award presentation.

Norman Rohrbach for the most part has remained in his home area of California.

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At the California Kiwanis meeting Monday, Oct. 14, Dr. Norman Rohrbach was presented with The George F. Hixson Award for service to the organization.

He started at the California High School as an agriculture teacher. When he retired, he was principal of California High School. His wife Joyce was present for the award presentation.

The $2,000 given via the Hixson awards in honor of Branstetter and Kent will go towards eliminating Maternal Neonatal Tetanus (MNT). Kiwanis International is joining with UNICEF in a worldwide project to eliminate MNT.

The award is named for George F. Hixson, elected in 1916 as the first president of Kiwanis International. He is the only person to have served as president for more than one year. It was during his two years in office that a club was chartered in Canada, making it truly an international organization.

Past Hixson award winners at California Kiwanis are: Jack Albertson, Leroy Robertson, Harry Minturn, Richard Barry, Julivia Barry, Dr. Melvin Twaddle, Robert Keil, Bill Pace, Eddie Blankenship, Kenny Kunze, Dr. Peter Kurowski, Logan Bolinger, Dr. Paul Branstetter and Larry Kent. On their behalf, $12,000 went towards eliminating Iodine Deficiency Disorder (IDD) and $2,00 went towards eliminating Maternal Neonatal Tetnus.

During the past year, members of the local organization has worked hard to help children in the community and the world. Not only did the organization work to eliminate MNT, California Kiwanis helps each year with the needs of children in the community, working with the Boy Scouts, giving scholarships, working with the schools and many other projects and assistance to the community. Kiwanis recently presented a $1,000 check to California Elementary School for landscaping and beautification.

Kiwanis District Lt. Gov. Pat Kelley installed the new officers and Board of Directors for California Kiwanis. Officers installed are President Jeff Shackleford, Vice president Kenneth Kunze, Treasurer Paul Branstetter and Secretary Norman Rohrbach. Installed as members of the Board of Directors Kent Mannering, Jean Endsley, Richard Barry, Kenny Kunze and Eddie Blankenship.

For those interested in serving youth locally and globally in a 98 year old organization, contact Jeff Shackleford, Kenneth Kunze or St. Paul's Lutheran Church at 573-796-2735. Kiwanis meetings are held each Monday evening at 6 p.m. with a home-cooked meal served in the church basement. Special guest speakers are often invited to the meetings to keep members aware of what it going on in the area and around the world.

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