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Blum Cherokee's 'Citizen of Year'

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Blum is Citizen of the Year - Cherokee City Administrator Don Eikmeier, right, presented this year's Cherokee Citizen of the Year award to Jeffrey Blum at the 2012 Cherokee County Recognition Banquet. The banquet was held on Saturday at the Western Iowa Tech Community Colleg Conference Center in Cherokee and highlights the growth and development in Cherokee County during the past year as noted by the Cherokee Area Economic Development Corporation. Photo by Mike Leckband
Businesses, individuals honored at Recognition Banquet

A true volunteer seeking neither notoriety or personal gain accurately describes the 2011 Cherokee Citizen of the Year - Jeffrey Blum, who was honored at Saturday's annual Cherokee County Recognition Banquet at Western Iowa Tech Community College in Cherokee.

Blum, a 43-year employee with what is now Tyson Foods, moved to Cherokee with his family in 1983 and continues working in the office at Tyson Retail Deli in Cherokee.

He has been an active worker in his civic club, in his church, with local youth organizations, and with the Cherokee Community Theater. He also has volunteered considerable time at the Cherokee PRCA Rodeo, the County fairs, and the Christmas Parades.

Blum is an active, dedicated member of the Cherokee Lions Club, St. Paul's United Methodist Church, assists his wife in Girl Scouts, and is a regular behind the scenes volunteer with the Cherokee Community Theater.

A large crowd attended the March 10th Cherokee Co. Recpgnition Banquet at the Western Iowa Tech Community College Conference Center. Photo by Paul Struck. For more photos, see the Recognition Banquet Photo Gallery.
In announcing the coveted award, City Administrator Don Eikmeier, quoting Mayor Mark Murphy, who was unable to attend, said, "In reviewing the nominees for this award, I found that most are not names that citizens would readily recognize. Rather, the nominees are frequently persons who quietly provide service to their church, their civic organization, their employer, and their community without a desire for recognition or accolades. This year's winner is of that same mold."

Blum was among several County businesses and individuals recognized at the popular event in the WITCC Conference Center that was attended by more than 225 people, the largest crowd ever, according to Mark Buschkamp, Director of the Cherokee Area Economic Development Corporation that annually organizes and hosts the event.

Among County businesses and individuals saluted for their 2011 accomplishments and economic contributions included First Cooperative Association, Burkhardt & Dawson CPAs, Denny O'Bryan Service to Agriculture, and O'Halloran International, all of Cherokee; Jack and Helen Simonsen of Simonsen Industries in Quimby; Gaylen Goettsch representing the Washta United Methodist Church; Karl and Sara Koelling of Marcus Dental Clinic; and Dale and Barb Cave for Country Creations LLC in Marcus.

Also, the City of Cleghorn honored Bernice McIntosh as its Citizen of the Year for her continued service to Cleghorn for many years.

Among many other Cherokee businesses honored were WITCC for its 15th Anniversary and for new President Dr. Terry Murrell, Tyson Retail Deli, Cherokee Youth Summer Ball Association, Sanford Museum, Heart and Sole Dance Studio, Cherokee Airport Authority, City of Cherokee, Hy-Vee DrugStore, Framing Nook and Main Street Antiques, Lifenet Air Ambulance, North Star Community Credit Union, Careage Hills, 60-year Magician Cletus Henke, Cherokee County Fair Board, and Cherokee County Solid Waste Commission.

Among Aurelia businesses and individuals saluted were Sunset Knoll Care & Rehab Center 50th Anniversary, Pioneer Hi-Bred International in Aurelia and Cherokee, Mud on Main, New Reflections, Aurelia Star, Lucky 7 Car Wash, Gustafson Realty in Aurelia and Cherokee, Melanie's Joy, and Capture Photography by Leah.

In Marcus, Marcus Lions Club, Sand Seed Service, Pizza Ranch, Marcus Chamber of Commerce, Ames Auto Body, Marcus Fair Board, Old Panhead Restaurant & Lounge, Marcus Junction, Topline Country Store.

Also recognized in Cherokee were Fareway, Cherokee County Conservation, Bright Beginnings Day Care, Underground Clothing, Simply For Her, Countryside Estates, Royster & Royster PLLC MN Counseling, Grin & Wear It, IC Church, Trinity Lutheran Church, Dairy Queen, Royer's Jewelry, Cherokee County GIS/IT.

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