A capacity crowd estimated at 450 at the Prescott High School Cafeteria saw Lauren Doucet named Citizen of the Year by the Prescott/Nevada County Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday night at its 2017 banquet.

A capacity crowd estimated at 450 at the Prescott High School Cafeteria saw Lauren Doucet named Citizen of the Year by the Prescott/Nevada County Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday night at its 2017 banquet.
Doucet also serves as the current 2017 President of Prescott/Nevada County Chamber of Commerce, and she operates Yours Truly Prescott Flowers & Gifts.
During an emotional acceptance speech, Doucet praised the Prescott community for accepting her as she relocated to the community five years ago and making her feel at home.
There were plenty of other big winners along with Doucet on the night.
There was Frank Henson, who was named “Treasure of Gold” recipient, and Pete DeWoody, who was named as “Hometown Hero.” Both men gave very short acceptance speeches, in short, saying thank you to the crowd and the chamber before leaving the stage.
Both Student of Year and Teacher of the Year were named for the community’s two school districts, Nevada School and Prescott School.
For Nevada Schools, Principal Michael Odom presented the Student of the Year award to Patrick Jackson, and the Teacher of the Year to Teresa Blake.
Odom’s counterpart, Robert Poole, presented the Prescott District’s Teacher of the Year award to an exuberant Kim Hale, who proclaimed “This is a great district with great people, great teachers and great kids. I’m lucky each day to get to see their little faces filled with promise and be able to help them.”
Principal Missy Walley of Prescott High School presented the Student of the Year award to Diana Aguirre, who was also named 2017 PHS Prom Queen last week. Aguirre also was on the Homecoming Court last fall, and Poole announced Tuesday that she has accepted a scholarship to Columbia University.
Poole noted, “We had a student accepted to Harvard, and now we have a student going to Columbia.  I am happy to say we are the southwest Arkansas leader in students going to Ivy League schools.”
The Business Leadership award went to Hillcrest Care and Rehab Center, a Prescott Nursing Home which was established 50 years go.  Hillcrest’s owner Eddie Arnold cited the facility’s history and 125 current employees, and he praised Prescott as a good place with good people to do business.
There were also honors for 2016 Farm Family of the Year, Steve and Renee Boeckman, who both recognized their time and support from the Prescott Firestone plant.
The Organization of the Year was a huge group of blue-shirt clad women, collectively known as the Nevada County Master Gardeners; the biggest challenge of the evening may have been fitting the group of ladies on stage.
Their presenter, Darren Neal, noted the work the group has done in the Prescott community over the past year, and he said, “To quantify their work in volunteer hours, they donated 1,692 hours, which calculated value is $39,149 in labor.”
State Senator Bruce Maloch of Magnolia delivered a short and often humorous keynote speech that highlighted three points; one, he spoke of looking for good things, including recognizing the good in the community; two, he touted community pride and encouraged residents to be proud of their home, and three, he spoke of “planting seeds of success,” noting that “with patience, care and fertile ground, that those seeds would yield a harvest.”
Maloch ended his speech presenting an economic grant check for $50,000 for development and preservation of the Prairie Deann Battlefield.
The event also saw several business principals and owners from nearby Hope in attendance, emphasizing the shared regional nature and common business interests in the Hempstead and Nevada region.