Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) - Rochester Mayor Kim Norton presided over her first Mayor’s Medal of Honor event Thursday recognizing thirteen members of the community for their various efforts in helping make the Rochester area a better place to live.

This was the 36th year of the event, and this year, one of the recipients was News-Talk 1340 KROC AM & 96.9 FM’s Andy Brownell. Andy was presented with the Personal Achievement Award. Andy is a longtime news anchor/reporter with KROC-AM and also hosts Rochester Today.

Townsquare Media (KROC’s parent company) Regional Operations Manager JB Wilde commented on the award:

“Our team is so proud of the work Andy does at Townsquare Media for News-Talk 1340 KROC AM and 96.9 FM and so happy to see his contributions to the Rochester community being recognized. Andy is not only one of the strongest journalists in southeast Minnesota, but he’s an incredible person. Congratulations!”

The awards ceremony began with Rochester Poet Laureate Susan McMillan reading a poem she wrote specifically for the event titled "It's You." Each award recipient was then introduced by the individual who received the same award the previous year and then given the opportunity to say a few words.

You can hear the poem and watch the award presentations and speeches of all of the 2019 Mayor's Medal of Honor winners below:


Personal Achievement Award - Andy Brownell

An individual in our community with a disabling condition or handicap who either:
a) demonstrated outstanding achievement in overcoming their personal disability or circumstances in the service of others, or
b) demonstrating excellent volunteer service by using their time and talents towards creating a better community for all.


Senior/Elder Achievement Award - Jeanette Fortier

A senior citizen who exhibits one of the following:
a) exemplary service among peers,
b) creative endeavors that benefit their community, or
c) promotion of health, economic, and other issues responding to the needs of senior citizens.


Artistic / Cultural Achievement Award - Tyler Aug

An individual who sustains and promotes creative artistic and/or cultural endeavors in our community by any of the following:
a) acting as a benefactor,
b) coordinating displays, performances or shows, personal achievement in art, music, theater, dance, literary or poetic endeavors, and other artistic or cultural activities


Excellence in City Service Award - Steven Schmidtv

An individual who is either:
a) an employee of the city who provides a service above and beyond the call of duty, or
b) a volunteer who provides extraordinary service to the city while fulfilling duties of appointment on a board, committee, or commission.


Community-Wide Service Award - Danielle Teal

Any member of the community who donates personal time and ability to the benefit the residents of the Rochester area.


Champion of Diversity Award - Miriam Goodson

An individual who demonstrates value for, facilitates, promotes, or utilizes the talents of the wide variety of diverse people in our community; one who celebrates all dimensions of diversity.


Educational Excellence Award - Natalia Benjamin

For individual achievement in sustaining high quality education in Rochester through one of the following:
a) personal endeavors as a teacher or educator,
b) administrative endeavors providing resources,
c) citizen providing service to the schools as a volunteer, or
d) any individual promoting the cause of education within the community.


Excellence in Industry Award - Naura Anderson

An individual exemplifying business and industrial advancement:
a) by encouraging development and growth in Rochester,
b) by demonstrating innovation in business or industrial concepts, or
c) through contributions that help sustain organizations that provide necessary services that benefit the citizens of our community.


Human Services Award - JoMarie Morris

An individual in our city who has either:
a) demonstrated a compassionate and a caring spirit by providing humanitarian services,
b) provided notable assistance to others any member of the community in need, or
c) who has assisted persons with special needs or a disability


Legacy Award - George Thompson

For action or endeavors that have or will have a lasting impact and be recognized by future generations as a significant event and/or momentous part of the history of Rochester and Olmsted County worthy of commemoration.


Sustainability Award - Ivan Idso

Any individual in our city who advances sustainable development (such as those recognized by the UNSDG) with emphasis on support for cleaner air, renewable energy, and creating a more livable, sustainable, and resilient community.


Youth Serving Community - Anjali Donthi

Any K-12 or locally enrolled college student up to the age of 21 who shows significant involvement, initiative, and support of our community.


Mayor’s Award - Jere Lantz

Any member of the community who has given of their time and talent to the benefit of the citizens of Rochester, Minnesota. [This is to be selected by the Mayor.]

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