To the Editor:
Each year for the past 38 years, Fairmont Exchange Club has presented the Book of Golden Deeds Award to a citizen of Fairmont. The purpose of this award is to recognize those citizens within the community whose self-sacrifice, response to duty, and other praiseworthy actions may pass unnoticed and unremembered by the general public.
This year's award will be presented to Phil Hanson at our banquet 5:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5, at Red Rock Center for the Arts. Tickets will be available at Red Rock Center, J&R Drug, the Fairmont Area Chamber of Commerce, and through the Fairmont Early Risers Kiwanis Club. The price is $12.
Phillip A. Hanson was born and raised on farms in Emmet County, Iowa. After the U.S. Army (1958-1960), and a degree in elementary education from Mankato State University in 1966, Phil began teaching at Los Alamos, N.M. His wife, Sharon, wanted to return home to Fairmont, so they did so in 1968. Phil taught in various elementary schools in Fairmont until retiring in 1994.
Phil's volunteer work began in 2004 with the restoration of Red Rock Center. Then he assisted with the installation of the elevator in the Historical Society Museum. Next, Phil worked on the restoration of the Opera House, re-doing the dressing rooms and creating a conference room.
Phil is a member of the board of directors of Red Rock, helping to obtain events for the center. He assists with school tours of the historical museum and performs many other duties as needed. Phil is a driving force behind the Triathlon, helping organize that event from 1983-89 and 2007 to present. He is a member of the Early Risers Kiwanis Club and the Martin County Preservation Association.
As a member of the Hobo Trail and Bridge Nature Walk Committee, Phil helped establish the trail and floating bridge. He worked on the restoration of the Livingston House in Lincoln Park, replacing the roof and windows.
Perhaps the most visible and valuable contribution by Phil is the restoration of the Pioneer Parsonage. Norm Langford agreed to work on the restoration, but only if Phil Hanson would help. The work will be completed this month.
Phil's next task was the painting of the bandshell in Sylvania Park, Phil did much of the work and also helped raise funding for the project. Phil is also associated with the Safe Routes to School Project.
Phil's motto, "Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at will change," seems to explain how he is able to take on and succeed at such difficult tasks. Our decision to select Phil Hanson for the 2012 Book of Golden Deeds Award was understandably easy.
If you have any questions, please call Don Richards at (507) 238-1106.
Fairmont Exchange Club