Holland Chamber Bestows Awards

October 9, 2002
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HOLLAND — In addition to the Small Business of the Year Award, in September the Holland Area Chamber of Commerce presented its annual Louis Hallacy II Distinguished Service Award to Hope College professor David Myers and the ATHENA Award to Deanna DePree, executive director of Life Services Systems in Holland.

Myers was honored for his efforts to help those with hearing problems by bringing the Closed Loop System Program to the Holland area. The “loop system” is a special amplifier attached to a wire encircling an audience, through which sound is broadcast directly to hearing aids outfitted with an inexpensive telecoil.

Myers’ effort was motivated by what he, a hearing challenged person, found in Europe. Many facilities in Scotland and Great Britain have the hearing loop system installed. While visiting there, he became interested in bringing the system to Holland. The system is used in several Hope College facilities.

His foundation and two anonymous corporations have pledged to pick up 40 percent of the costs, or up to $400, whichever is greater, toward installation of the system at any facility.

The Louis Hallacy II Distinguished Service Award was established in 1983 to recognize “an individual whose endeavors and contributions have provided cultural, economic, and social betterment for the greater Holland area.”

The ATHENA Award is designed to “recognize and honor men and women whose accomplishments and endeavors have personified the highest level of professional excellence while advancing and empowering women in the workplace and the community.”

DePree was honored for numerous efforts on behalf of women and helping them “to develop their skills and to realize their potential.”           

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