The Westport-Weston Chamber of Commerce is recognizing three Westonites with its First Citizen Awards, meant to honor the current and future leaders and role models in the community.
The chamber is holding a banquet on Tuesday, May 21, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Inn at Longshore in Westport to honor one citizen from Westport and one from Weston who has held leadership positions in community-based programs and organizations and is active in community, state or national organizations.
The chamber will also honor four high school students as Future First Citizens, a boy and girl from both Weston and Staples high schools, who are demonstrating the above qualities and positioning themselves as future leaders.
Ken Edgar will receive a First Citizen Award. Weston High School students Claire Cook and Matthew Proctor are receiving Future First Citizen Awards.
From Westport, award winners are Barbara Butler and Staples High School students Jacqueline Devine and Corey Werner.
“We are looking forward to the opportunity to give
back to our communities while recognizing those who do such an outstanding job within their own towns,” said Lisa Parrelli Gray, executive director and president of the Westport-Weston Chamber of Commerce.
Mr. Edgar, an attorney, has lived in Weston with his family since 2006 and has been involved with many volunteer organizations and town government ever since.
He is a member of the Planning and Zoning Commission and serves on the boards of trustees of Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Fairfield County, the Weston Kiwanis Foundation and the Weston Historical Society.
During 2011 and 2012, he served as co-chairman of Weston’s Charter Revision Commission.
Mr. Edgar helped form the Weston Community Service Coalition, which promotes volunteerism in Weston and maintains a list of more than 200 individuals prepared to volunteer in town.
He also helped form the town’s Volunteer Emergency Response Committee, which administers the more than 140 neighborhood captains in Weston and staffs the comfort station maintained by the town in emergencies.
He is a member of the Democratic Town Committee and was named Weston’s 2012 Citizen of the Year.
Claire, daughter of Julie and Eric Cook, is a senior at Weston High School and was born and raised in Weston. She has a twin sister, Lily, and along with Lily is the eldest of four siblings.
Claire is a PSIA Level 1 certified adaptive ski instructor in Peru, Vt. She has volunteered at Bromley Mountain’s Bart Ruggiere Adaptive Ski School for the past four years, working with special needs students of all ages and disabilities.
Claire is the youngest instructor to train and teach at the school. She was awarded the highest honor the ski school gives, the “No Limits Award.”
Through the Bart Center, she also participates annually in the mountain’s Wounded Warrior Project.
In addition to her work as an adaptive ski instructor, Claire is actively involved in her community and at Weston High School. She and her twin sister started an Audubon Bluebird Project at Aspetuck Valley’s 125-acre bird sanctuary in Weston as part of their All4Animals animal advocacy club.
Claire is on the high school field hockey team and ski team, and is the captain of the girls golf team.
She is a tutor and mentor through Weston’s National Honor Society and will spend her senior internship this spring at Gilbertie’s Herb Gardens in Easton as an apprentice learning the organic micro-green salad and herb business.
Matt is a junior at Weston High School. Born and raised in the United Kingdom, he moved in 2007 to Weston, where he lives with his parents, Karen and Simon, and younger sister, Issy.
Since the age of 5, Matt has been a dedicated musician, focusing on the piano and flute. Currently principal flutist of the Norwalk Youth Symphony, he has had the opportunity to participate in orchestral festivals in Europe. Matt has also attended the Connecticut All-State Music Festival since freshman year.
In July 2011, he was invited to perform at the Julius Baker Master Classes, a summer program where flutists from across the United States perform and work with professionals. He also performs with the Weston High School Wind Ensemble, and WHS Company’s pit orchestra.
Matt studies piano at the studio of Myra Garvett and has performed with the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra and Westonite James Naughton. He also teaches piano to children in Weston.
With a passion for the media, Matt, along with three friends, founded the Weston Television Network in early 2011. Following another passion, he co-founded thedailyauto.com, an automotive blog dedicated to sharing the latest industry news with the next generation of “auto-millennials.”
Since his freshman year, he has run for the Weston High School cross country, indoor and outdoor track programs. A year-round long-distance runner, he made the varsity team in his sophomore and junior years and has represented the Weston team at state level meets.
Striving to give back to the community, Matt, along with a friend, designed and built an outreach website for the Friends of Lachat, a charity devoted to restoring the historic Lachat farmhouse in Weston.
In the fall of 2013, Matt will be returning to the United Kingdom to complete his high school studies, attending Sevenoaks School in England, where he has been awarded a music scholarship.
The awards banquet May 21 is open to all members of the public.
To purchase tickets, visit westportwestonchamber.com or call 203-227-9234.