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SCHS announces 2013 Class of Summit Award recipients

12/13/2012 - West Side Leader
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By Staff Writer

SUMMIT COUNTY — The Summit County Historical Society (SCHS) recently announced the 2013 Class of Summit Award recipients.

These awards were established in 2011 and are presented to distinguished past and present residents of Akron and Summit County who have been recognized nationally for inspirational accomplishments and whose life stories continue to impact the Greater Akron community.

The winners will be recognized March 16 at Greystone Hall at a presentation emceed by Dave Lieberth, former deputy mayor-administration for the city of Akron and director emeritus of the SCHS. They are:

• Honorary Chair: Rob Briggs. Briggs is the past president of the GAR Foundation and chairman emeritus and former CEO of Buckingham, Doolittle & Burroughs LLP, a law firm with offices in Ohio and Florida. He became a Knight Foundation trustee in June 2002, was elected vice chair Sept. 20, 2005, and chair in March 2010. He is a board member and former co-chair of OneCommunity and board member and chair of Invent Now Inc. (formerly The National Inventors Hall of Fame Foundation). He was the founding chair of the Fund for Our Economic Future. He also serves on the Board of Directors of FirstMerit Corp. and several other for-profit companies. Briggs has received numerous honors and awards for his community vision and leadership.

• Sports: Carol Heiss Jenkins, Hayes Jenkins and David Jenkins. All three are multiple skating world champions with connections to Akron. Hayes Jenkins won gold and Carol Heiss Jenkins took home silver in the 1956 Winter Olympics. Carol Heiss Jenkins and David Jenkins captured gold in 1960. The Jenkins brothers were born in Akron, and Carol moved to the area after she become Mrs. Hayes Jenkins. The couple resided in the area until Hayes’ retirement from Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co., when they moved closer to the ice rinks in Cleveland, where Carol still coaches. Dr. David Jenkins completed medical school at Case Western Reserve, becoming a gastroenterologist. He resides in Oklahoma.

• Industrialism: Harvey Firestone Sr. The Columbiana County native came to Akron in 1900 and organized a company that helped make Akron the Rubber Capital of the World. According to SCHS officials, his ingenuity in industry and relationship building catapulted the Firestone Tire & Rubber Co. and led to progressive progress in the transportation industry. At the same time, Firestone became an advocate for civic affairs in Akron, teaching local professionals their role in building a strong community, according to SCHS officials.

• Humanitarianism: Brevet Maj. Gen. Alvin C. Voris. According to SCHS officials, Voris was instrumental in recruiting local men to serve in the Civil War, and his skills as a lawyer and citizen soldier bolstered the morale of the units he led, including segments of the United States Colored Troops. Injured during the battle of Gettysburg and nursed by Clara Barton, his service continued after the war assisting individuals in receiving their due rights after emancipation prior to Reconstruction. Throughout his life, Voris was elected to the State Legislature, Constitutional Assembly and as judge for the probate and common pleas courts.

• Medicine: Dr. Haynes Robinson. Certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Medical Genetics, Anatomic Pathology, Robinson specializes in pediatric medicine, genetics and anatomic pathology at Akron Children’s Hospital Genetic Center in Akron. A graduate of The Ohio State University Medical School, he completed residencies at Akron Children’s for pediatrics and Roswell Park Memorial Institute in Buffalo, N.Y., for pathology. Robinson has been voted one of the best doctors for 2011-12 by the national organization Best Doctors.

• The Arts: Woodrow Nash. An Akron native and Buchtel High School graduate, Nash creates three-dimensional art featuring his passion to elevate the human spirit. His early endeavors in New York City featured his artwork on jazz labels for Father Hines and Cat Anderson and later brought him home to illustrate for Goodyear Aerospace Corp. and American Greetings Corp. Today, his sculptures, created in Akron, are trademarked as “African Nuveau” and received with national acclaim, according to SCHS officials.

• Entertainment: Melina Kanakaredes. A second-generation Greek American born in Akron, Kanakaredes made her acting debut at the age of 8 in a local community performance of “Tom Sawyer.” She graduated from Firestone High School and attended The Ohio State University and Point Park College in Pittsburgh before moving to New York City to star in off-Broadway plays. Performances on national TV shows such as “Guiding Light,” “NYPD Blue” and “Providence” led to her recognition and casting in “CSI: NY” opposite Gary Sinise for six seasons.

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