Crossroads Chamber’s Around the World Gala Recognizes Influencers in the Community

Crossroads Chamber’s Around the World Gala Recognizes Influencers in the Community

The Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce hosted the annual Around The World Gala on Saturday evening. Indiana's community leaders and citizens came to honor the outstanding efforts of educators, police officers, firefighters, and more who served our community with the highest integrity.

The event was black tie, and the community came dressed to impress. Many couples wore matching dresses and tuxedos. The dresses glittered under the large ballroom chandelier as people chatted while enjoying the drinks. Each table had a different country’s flag to showcase the around the world theme.

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"I think that the Gala is a fabulous event. I love to come here to mix and mingle, and this event is so positive for the community." said attendee Johnyece.

Jazz musician Marco Villarreal played beautiful melodies on his acoustic guitar, and people were served cheese, meatballs, and other delicious foods.

Chairman of the Board of Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce, Deann Patena shared, "This is one of the largest events that we do. We pick the policemen and firemen of the year, and we also recognize the Teacher of the Year, and we do an Athena Award which is a recognition of women in business in the community.”

The Athena Award is the perfect representation of a successful businesswoman, as it represents the Greek Goddess Athena, who is known to be a warrior who used her intelligence to solve problems. This year's recipient was Cindy Hall, Executive Director of Ivy Tech Community College Lake County, Michigan City, and Valparaiso. 

"It's a good night for the community to come together and do something interesting and have fun with our entertaining band afterwards."

The Inspiring Educator of the Year Awards are about teachers who go above and beyond. These educators taught students about empathy and kindness and gave their students the confidence they need to build the foundation of their lives. Megan Bush, Diane Rosenthal, and Darleen Maas were all chosen for the award.

Firefighter of the Year Award winners Patrick Westbury and Jarred Andras have put their lives on the line to help their community. The Police Officer of the Year Awards went to Detective Robert Franko and Corporal Jason Besse for never giving up and being a positive influence on their community.

Advertising Sales Manager for The Times Media Company, Roxanne Olejnik, shared, "It's a night where we all get together and enjoy our community and recognize the important people that contributed to it. This is one of the most fun evenings that I have all year long; I love looking forward to it."

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