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Annual Awards Dinner

2024 Annual Awards Dinner

The Carl E. Wehde Award

This award is given in memory of Carl E. Wehde, who was Mayor of Crystal Lake, a business owner, a school board member, and a patron of the arts.


  • Made a verifiable contribution to the quality of life in the greater Crystal Lake area
  • Provided inspiration that has also sparked other people to become involved in efforts to assist the community
  • Involved in establishing goals for community development and seeing them through to fruition
  • Involved in more than one project area or organization showing leadership in education, community service/government, or business for more than 3 years, establishing a consistent pattern of public service
  • Dedicated to the mission of improving opportunities for all people, going beyond that of just providing funds for programs
  • Demonstrated active multi-dimensional interests that have challenged community leaders like Carl E. Wehde

Previous Winners:

Bill Dwyer 2002

Ken Koehler 2003

Bob Blazier 2004

Mark Elmore 2005

Mike Tryon 2006

David Hubbard 2007

Kathi Etten 2008

Robert O. Covey 2009

Mike Splitt 2010

Ann Viger 2011

Patti Lutz 2012

Diana Kenney 2013

Aaron Shepley 2014

Rick Schildgen 2015

Peter Affrunti 2016

Bob Gray 2017

Ryan Farrell 2018

Crystal Lake Lions Club 2019

Crystal Lake Park District 2021

High School District 155 Business Incubator Program 2022

Victoria Summers Crystal Lake Chamber Foundation 2023

Denise Smith 2024

The Robert O. Covey Award

This award is presented in memory of community and business leader Bob Covey who fulfilled responsibilities as an attorney, elected official, and bank executive, and provided service as a volunteer. He was president of the Crystal Lake Chamber in 1950 with 80 members. He was a founding member of the Ambassadors. His community leadership includes School District Board for 19 years, vice chair of the County Board, former president and CEO of what is now the Crystal Lake branch of Citibank, and a member of the Lion’s Club for 63 years. Bob passed away on March 5, 2013.


  • Exhibited business success in the Crystal Lake area
  • Involvement in the local community, either by service or support
  • Involvement in the Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce or other business organizations

Previous Winners:

Countryside Flower Shop 2004

Home State Bank 2005

Charles River Development Group 2006

Sherman Mechanical, Inc. 2007

Heisler’s Bootery 2008

Centegra Health System 2009

Dorion-Gray Retirement Planning 2010

Exemplar Financial Network 2011

Black Diamond Plumbing & Mechanical 2012

Curran Contracting, Inc. 2013

Georgio’s Chicago Pizzeria & Pub 2014

STAR 105.5 FM 2015


Phoenix Woodworking Corp. 2017

Courtesy Buick GMC 2018

JA Frate Transportation Services, Inc. 2019

City of Crystal Lake 2021

Miller Verchota, CPAs Inc. 2022

First Institute 2023

General Kinematics 2024

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