2016 Best of Reston Honorees (in order of presentation):
The Vade Bolton-Ann Rodriguez Legacy Award was presented to Kacey Hirschfeld, Olivia Wolfe and Hannah Becker of Amy’s Amigos. Given to only two individuals since its inception, this award honors acts of volunteerism and leadership that motivate and inspire a new generation of leaders and create a legacy of service. Amy’s Amigos was recognized for channeling grief into ongoing action, modeling wellness and service, and for passing the leadership torch to the next generation of Reston’s leaders. The award was presented by 2015 Bolton–Rodriguez Honoree Casey Veatch and Strategic Partner CORE Foundation, represented by Doug Bushee.
The Small Business Leader award was presented to Maryam Ovissi of Beloved Yoga for inspiring community well-being and ensuring tools for self-empowerment, self-healing and self-realization are available to everyone in our community. Maryam believes giving back to the community is powerful when we thrive together. The award was presented by Strategic Partner, Virginia Spine Institute, represented by Dr. Thomas Schuler.
Wiygul Automotive Clinic also received the Small Business Leader Award. Their key to life and business is defined by a simple but compelling philosophy: “Never Lie, Cheat or Steal—Ever.” This practice has paid off for the Wiygul family in its 60 years in business, along with another core value, giving back to jump start hope for families and children in the community they serve. The award was presented by Strategic Partner, Reston Community Center, represented by Beverly Cosham. Accepting the award was W.D. Wiygul and Neil Kelly, Manager of Wiygul Automotive.
Google received the Corporate Business Leader Award. Innovative, hip, iconic, and ubiquitous—Google touches our lives and those around the world every day. However, its specific impact in Reston and Fairfax County includes bringing its signature culture of innovation and considerable financial resources to tackle a wide-ranging set of challenges in education, poverty relief, and the support of returning service men, women and K-9 heroes. The award was presented by Strategic Partner Access National Bank, represented by Mike Clarke. Accepting the award was Mike Bradshaw, Google Director, Cloud Platform, East Region.
Friends of Reston Community Projects accepted the Civic-Community Organization Award for bringing together an impressive group of volunteers who have taken Robert E. Simon’s vision to heart. They have operated under the radar, but the impacts of their $2.1 million investment and hands-on volunteer hours make them hard to ignore. These friends answered the needs they saw for keeping Reston’s environmental promise and natural assets alive for all to enjoy. The award was presented by Chuck Veatch, representing the Charles A. Veatch Family, Visionary Partner.
Jim Elder was presented the Individual Community Leader Award. As any parent of a youth athlete, or any person who has ever competed, coached or officiated knows, the story that plays out on the field is influenced by a number of things. Jim was recognized for teaching Reston youth that good sportsmanship and fair play are as essential to playing the games they love as skills, stats and strategy. The award was presented by Strategic Partner Bechtel, represented by Jim Lamble.
Bechtel received the second Corporate Business Leader Award. A world class business, it’s no surprise that Bechtel also goes big when it comes to promoting community engagement. Its “Employees Club” gives staff a place to bring their purposed-driven passions to our community and the world. Their adoption of local elementary and middle schools tell the story. The award was presented by Visionary Partner Regulatory Economics Group, represented by Bob Van Hoecke, and Strategic Partner Cooley LLP, represented by Brian Winterhalter. Accepting the award was Barbara Rusinko, Executive V.P., Bechtel Nuclear, Security & Environmental Global Business Unit.
The final award of the evening was presented to one of the most well-known people in Reston. Leila Gordon received the Individual community Leader Award for rarely stopping to take a breath between projects and convening partners for initiatives critical to community. Leila’s contributions go well beyond the scope of a day job that simply provides a stage for giving all who live, work, play in Reston a way to live with compassion and creativity. The award was presented by Visionary Partner Leidos, represented by Mike Coogan.