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Fredonia volunteer earns Lydic award

Submitted photo by Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Pictured, from left, are Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce President Daniel Heitzenrater and Larry Fiorella, this year’s Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award recipient.

MAYVILLE — The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce awarded Larry Fiorella, one of the chamber’s board of directors, with the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award during Friday’s annual meeting.

The Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual meeting at Webb’s Captain’s Table, featuring a short business meeting, the presentation of the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award and a keynote address by the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency and Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth.

The highlight of the Chamber’s event was the presentation of the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award.

“Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce is proud to award the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award to a person or group that has played a significant role in bringing people together for the good of our county and our communities,” Heitzenrater said. “All of these award recipients have been special to us for a variety of reasons.”

Heitzenrater explained the 2022 recipient of the award is “closer than some” because of his direct involvement with the Fredonia Chamber of Commerce. Heitzenrater presented the 2022 Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award to Fiorella.

“Larry Fiorella has been actively involved in the Fredonia community Chamber of Commerce for many years and this past year served as chair of that committee,” he said. “He also is the chair of Festivals Fredonia, a separate organization that works to rally community volunteers around a string of events held in Fredonia each year.”

Through his work with both the Fredonia Chamber of Commerce and Festivals Fredonia, Heitzenrater said Fiorella has been “instrumental” in unifying volunteers from different sectors and organizations to champion the “small business revolution” and create partnerships between different organizations.

In addition to his work with the Chamber of Commerce and other community volunteering efforts, Fiorella is a financial adviser at HBKS Wealth Management.

Before presenting Fiorella with his award, Heitzenrater shared the nomination letter that was written in recognition of Fiorella’s work in the community.

“Larry not only spends countless volunteer hours on Festivals Fredonia events, but he takes the time to get to know his volunteer teams and the business owners they partner with,” he said. “He works collaboratively with everyone to make sure Fredonia remains a vibrant community which continues to attract residents and entrepreneurs.”

Fiorella thanked his fellow volunteers and board members, explaining that without their collaborative work and effort, he wouldn’t be receiving the award. He described the award as a “humbling experience.”

Addressing the historical legacy of the Pam Lydic Coalition Builder Award, Fiorella said it was ironic for the award to be presented to someone from the Fredonia area.

“It’s sort of ironic to be standing up here,” he said, “because Pam, who was such a huge champion for all of the communities throughout the county, was met with some resistance in Fredonia way back then. That spawned Festivals Fredonia as a result. This is kind of a full circle for Pam. I wish she was here to see this today. All of that work that Pam did throughout the community and throughout the county now is coming full circle back to Fredonia where she wanted all this collaboration to take place.”

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