Owner of auto dealership honored as 2013 Distinguished Citizen
RANSON — The Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce gave Guy’s Buick/GMC dealership owner Gary Chicchirichi its Distinguished Citizen of the Year award during its annual banquet at Hollywood Casino June 26.
[cleeng_content id="131071230" description="Read it now!" price="0.49" t="article"]Chicchirichi joins past winners of the award, including Roger Ramey, Ed Smith and Don Mickey, who were present at last week’s banquet.
Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Heather Morgan McIntyre called Chicchirichi the best person for the honor.
“The committee felt due to his long time dedication to Jefferson County in helping people and organizations and contributing to the business community, and he was the best candidate,” McIntyre said.
The Spirit of Jefferson sponsors the Chamber’s Distinguished Citizen Award every year.
Chicchirichi is part owner in the family business, Guy’s Buick GMC, which he helped found in 1967. He graduated from Charles Town High School in 1959 and has been active in the community most of his life, having served on the Bank of Charles Town board since 1994, and working with the Boys and Girls Club.
He said he was surprised about being selected but believed he was undeserving of the award.
“I just can’t believe this,” he said. “It is very, very nice. So many other people around Charles Town and Jefferson County never get anything for what they do. I’m not deserving.
He said when his name was called he tried to knock his friend Don Clendening off his chair. Clendening had lured him to the banquet by claiming the Rotary Club was being recognized and that there was an extra ticket. He found out later that everyone knew about the event, even his father.
“They had to set me up,” he said.
Among the other highlights of the banquet, American Public University President and CEO Wallace Boston gave the keynote address. He spoke about the promise and possibilities of online education.
The winner of this year’s George E. Vickers Business Award was also announced and was given to Hollywood Casino at Charles Town.
During his acceptance speech, general manager Al Britton said the casino is confident it will remain a viable part of Jefferson County’s economic picture, despite increased competition from Maryland and other states.
“We will be a healthy business into the long-distant future and we are happy to be a business that other businesses have built around … and we will continue to play that role,” he said.
The chamber also recognized a number of new businesses, including American Public University’s Finance Center, Electra Vision, Hair by Luke, Rolling Smoke BBQ and UrgenKey Lockmith.