The Greendale Chamber of Commerce held its annual Awards Banquet on Feb. 1 at Tuckaway Country Club and awarded the Business Member of the Year, Charlie Herman Educator of the Year, and Spirit of Greendale as members enjoyed a night of dining.
has been named the Business Member of the Year for their commitment to the community and their willingness to enhance the quality of life for those who live and work in Greendale, says the chamber. Established in the historic Village of Greendale in 1987, Ferch’s was created based on Betty Ferchoff’s fond childhood memories of the soda fountain in the Des Jardins Drug Store in Greendale. Betty’s family, the Kuglitsch’s, were pioneers of the FDR-created village in 1938 and played an important role in Greendale’s history. Today, Betty along with her son and business partner, Jeff Ferchoff, carry on the family legacy of community involvement.
They continually support the local schools, churches, sports teams, and other organizations that benefit the community, and were instrumental in the development of Daffodil Playground and the Greendale Ice Rink. Ferch’s is actively involved in the special events hosted in downtown Greendale throughout the year which highlight local businesses and help to promote a sense of community. Ferch’s is a member of the Greendale Chamber of Commerce, Greendale Village Business Association, Public Celebrations Committee, and the Greendale Historical Society.
The Charlie Herman Educator of the Year is Sandy Speare. She began her teaching career in the Greendale Schools in 1984 after graduating from UW-Milwaukee with a major in Exceptional Education. Her passion for developing adolescent readers drew her back to UW-Milwaukee to earn a master’s degree in Library and Information Science. In her role as Library Media Specialist at , Sandy strives to stay on the cutting edge of technology. She collaborates with staff and engages with students to determine how best to use technology in the classroom. Keenly aware of student interests when it comes to reading, she helps to stretch their horizons to include books they may not have previously considered.
Sandy was instrumental in bringing multiple literacy opportunities to students including the One Book/One School Program and the Battle of the Books competition which increased the volume and genre of books read by staff and students. Sandy is the driving force behind the After School Study Club at Greendale Middle School offering students not only an environment to study and research, but access to technology that may not be available to them at home. As a result of her passion for reading, Sandy hosts book talks, literature circles and book clubs which help to inspire a love of reading and learning in those who participate.
Judy Fons is the recipient of the Spirit of Greendale award. Since moving to the community in 1961, Judy has continually and eagerly volunteered her time and taken on leadership roles within local organizations and the Greendale Schools. Passionate about Greendale and a champion for children, she has been involved with the Greendale Playschool, Jr. Women’s Club, Village Club, Parish Council, Friends of Music, Park and Recreation Department, Public Celebrations Committee, Twi-Nite Girls’ Softball League, and Step Up to Better Health Committee. She was elected to the Greendale School District Board of Education where she served as member and president. During her tenure, she was a fervent supporter of the renovation of Greendale High School. Judy took great pride in her involvement in the planning and rebuilding of Jaycee Park – working with the Village, School District and well over 100 volunteers to accomplish the rebuilding in nearly one day.