The Waynesville-St. Robert Chamber of Commerce announced that David Lowe won Citizen of the Year at the Chamber Community Leadership Awards Banquet Feb. 9.

Lowe was nominated by the Rotary Club of Pulaski County. According to Lowe's biography, he's been an active volunteer member of many professional, military, civic, charitable, and religious organizations in Pulaski County.

The Chamber reported that there were 155 individuals in attendance at the Community Leadership Awards Banquet, which was held at the ARK Community and Sports Center.

Also announced at the banquet were Organization of the Year and Volunteer of the Year. Organization of the Year was the Sustainable Ozarks Partnership (SOP) and Volunteer of the Year was Sean Wilson.

The Chamber said, in a press release, that through the efforts of the Sustainable Ozarks Partnership our region has seen many successes in 2017.

"Some of those successes include, Increased Basic Combat Training mission load at Fort Leonard Wood, Planned Military Construction Funding for a replacement hospital on Fort Leonard Wood, Strengthened partnerships within our communities, our state and Fort Leonard Wood, Enhanced focus on commercial air transportation access to the region, Sustained rigor and high performance in our public school districts, A comprehensive analysis of the economic impacts of personnel reductions at Fort Leonard Wood and the identification of mitigation strategies to offset those impacts," The Chamber said.

According to the Chamber, the highlight of the year, thanks to the SOP, came when the Department of the Army formally recognized the significance of the Sustainable Ozarks Partnership's local, regional and state support for Fort Leonard Wood by presenting the FLW-SOP partnership initiative with the 2017 Army Community Partnership Award. This award officially acknowledged their commitment to national defense through their partnerships with the Army aimed at lowering operational costs, improving mission training and readiness, expanding capabilities and creating efficiencies.

Sean Wilson, was recognized for his dedication and passion to the youth in Pulaski County, according to the Chamber, by presenting the CHOICES program to area eighth graders as well as teaching other youth within the school districts professional development skills.

"Sean has brought his knowledge of leadership development to the current Leadership Pulaski County class and the Alumni Association. He is the chairperson for the Governmental and Military Affairs Committee, where his passion for our Armed Forces and those who have served has played a role in helping to coordinate the Veterans’ Day Ceremony and Parade. Last but not least, Sean was an instrumental part in creating the ‘Speak Your Peace’ Civility Project which focuses on three main topics to educate people on how to “Be Informed, Be Empowered, and Be the Difference,” while using Social Media," the Chamber said.

Additionally, the Chamber recognized the Ambassador of the Year and named Laura Schoephorster. According to the Chamber, Ambassador of the Year is determined by their attendance at Chamber functions and Laura attended 67 out of 102 events in 2017.

"t any Chamber function you’re sure to see the bright blue jackets worn by the members of the Chamber’s Ambassador Club. They are the Chamber’s army of volunteers, and it is a special privilege to honor them for their dedicated service," the Chamber said.