Originally published in The Weekly Packet, November 29, 2018
Five honored with Spirit of America Awards
Sedgwick resident Colby Pert is honored with the Spirit of America Award for 24 years in public office on November 20 in Ellsworth.
by Anne Berleant
Civic volunteers from two peninsula towns were honored with the 2018 Spirit of America Award at the Hancock County Commissioners’ meeting November 20.
Spirit of America Awards are presented to local individuals, organizations and projects for “commendable community service,” according to the Spirit of America Foundation website. The Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) charity established in Maine to encourage volunteerism.
In District II, Colby Pert was honored for service to Sedgwick. His 19 years on the board of selectmen, and stints on the board of appeals, school board and as code enforcement officer showed his ability to “wear many hats and fill in as needed,” Commissioner Antonio Blasi said.
Pert was nominated by the board of selectmen, from which he stepped down earlier this year.
“In his many ventures in town government, he served with distinction,” Selectman Ben Astbury said after the ceremony. “He was always somebody that could give advice.”
Pert was notified of the award months ago, he said. “I don’t know what I’ve done to deserve it. What I’ve done is what I [was] supposed to do when I was elected.”
Surry residents Tom Welgoss, Pat Jencks and Pugnuts Ice Cream Shop owners Eric Treworgy and Karl Holmes were recognized in District 1. Welgoss, the current Surry town treasurer, “goes way beyond his duties [providing] valuable service to the town,” Commissioner William F. Clark said. His nomination letter noted his work with the Surry Backpack Program, sending weekend food home with school children in need.
Jencks was honored for services to Surry Community Improvement Association and the Surry School Board.
Treworgy and Holmes “donate to numerous causes and…dedicate themselves to supporting every facet of community life,” Clark read from the letter nominating the duo.
The Spirit of America Foundation was established as a public charity in Maine in 1990 to encourage volunteerism. Since then, over 500 Spirit of America ceremonies have taken place.