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MARQUETTE – The Board of Directors of the Marquette County Community Foundation has announced the 2021 recipients of its annual Catalyst Awards.
A Catalyst Award, the foundation said, recognizes the efforts of those who build community through volunteerism or philanthropy and inspire others to do the same.
Double Trouble Entertainment received the Catalyst Award in the Business category. Bill and Pat Digneit moved to Marquette to attend Norther Michigan University and have since made their home in the Upper Peninsula.
“If you take care of your community, your community will take care of you” is the motto of the Digneits, said the foundation.
CFMC board secretary Maura Davenport said in a press release: “They have given countless hours and in-kind support to Lake Superior Hospice, NMU, Beacon House, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts to name a few. These efforts, along with their business philosophy, serve to inspire others by example through tireless and selfless efforts to volunteer and be benefactors of the Marquette County community.
Spread Goodness Day received the Catalyst Award in the Service Club / Organization category. Inspired by her love of volunteering, founder Anna Dravland wanted to encourage others to find their purpose by supporting their communities in their own way, the foundation said.
Spread Goodness Day inspires countless individuals, groups, businesses and organizations to make positive change at the level they are able and comfortable to do. It was proclaimed an official annual holiday by the City of Marquette and the State of Michigan in 2021.
Jesie Melchiori received the Catalyst Award in the Individual category. Melchiori is President of the Great Lakes Rodeo, Owner of Cold Springs Livery, Board Member of Haunted Hayride, Board Member of Algiers County Fair and Campaign Chair of Gwinn Area Community Schools Booster Club. Melchiori is the General Manager of Up North Lodge in Forsyth Township.
CFMC Administrator Lisa Jahnke said: “Her smiling face is the one you’ll see behind the bar, in the kitchen, delivering food, throwing parties and coordinating bike nights to benefit local charities. every week. Each Christmas season, Jesie undertakes “Operation Big Christmas” providing holiday meals to hundreds of families.
“Jesie thinks it takes a village to do everything she’s done. She is proud to be a part of the Gwinn community and the Gwinn community is so thrilled that she is part of theirs.
Henry Chittle received the Catalyst Award in the Youth category. At just 9 years old, Henry is already an asset to his community. He looks for opportunities to help others, the foundation said, and he does so creatively and effectively. From selling his own artwork to support the Upper Peninsula Animal Shelter to running a lemonade stand to raise money for the care clinic, Henry uses his time and talent to benefit others. .
“I am only 9 years old and I did not think I would be chosen at all” Henry said in his acceptance speech. “I didn’t know there was a price for it. … I just like to fundraise and fundraise for things that need money, like food banks and stuff.