Kikkert, Rutkowski named Florida's ‘Citizens of Year'

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:15

    FLORIDA- Joseph Kikkert and Vincent Rutkowski have been named Florida Citizens of The Year. Both men have been active with the Boy Scouts in Florida for decades. Joseph Kikkert embarked as a volunteer with the Cub Scouts in 1978 after advising his wife, Barbara, that he was just going to assist them with this one camping trip. Kikkert has been a Scout Master for the Boy Scouts since 1980. He has worked with the Little League from 1978 through 1979, is a former member of BASS and a Life Member of the North American Fishing Club. Vincent Rutkowski became a Cub Master in 1974 and two years later a Scout Master, working with both the Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts. In 1995 he became Scout Master of Explorers Scout Pack 48. As a member of the Florida Ambulance Corps, Rutkowski has served as both secretary and custodian and in 2000, became a member of the Florida Fire Co. and Fire Police holding the rank of Sergeant. He's also a member of the Grand Jurors Association of Orange County and is presently serving as a director of the Association. The Florida Fun Fest Committee also announced that Matthew Keleman will receive the Youth Achievement Award. Matthew has been involved with the Boy Scouts since first grade and has now earned the rank of Eagle Scout with multiple palms. He constructed a prayer garden for the local Presbyterian Church. Matthew, who graduated second in his class from Seward, held leadership positions in many of its numerous clubs and activities. Most notable among these are his pivotal role in the founding of the district's Cross Country program and the position he held on the School Board, helping to redefine the relationship between the district's students and administration. Through the American Legion, Matthew has represented the Village at Boys State and is a recipient of the University of Rochester's Bausch and Lomb honorary Science Award. Matthew Keleman's ambition in life is to become a doctor. He will be attending Cornell University this Fall. Additionally, The Committee has awarded a Special Lifetime Achievement Award to John (Jake C.) Harter for his years of service to the community. Harter was Mayor of the Village of Florida from 1974 to 2000. Committee members said, "In his years as Mayor, Jake's contributions to the Village of Florida have been nothing short of remarkable. Some significant endeavors have been purchasing a water system, the construction of a Water Filtration Plant, building a new Senior Center, Library and Police Station as well as having new sidewalks installed, extending sewer system lines and far too many other accomplishments to list in his 26 years as Mayor of the Village of Florida." Harter also had a hand in bringing Little League to Florida and even coached for the League as well as finding time to serve as a member of the Florida Fire Co., Florida Lions Club and St. Joseph's Holy Name. In 1951, together with Rick Lysack, they coached the CYO Midget Basketball team to the NYS Championship. Awards will be presented at the Florida Fun Fest on Friday, Aug. 6, at 6 p.m.