Farrell Citizen of the Year - Award Recipients

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Ted Pedas Awards — Nomination Forms

2004 - Farrell 'Citizen of the Year' Honorees

[Masthead - Herald]

Ceremony honors citizens

The Herald (Sharon, Pa) — July 26, 2004

[2004 Farrell Honorees] Farrell and Wheatland honored those who make their communities shine Saturday during an awards ceremony of the 2004 Farrell Homecoming.

Riley Smoot Jr. and Gabino Madrazo received the distinction of being named citizens of the year, while Jessie McFarland and Andrew Mastrian III were honored with the junior citizen of the year awards.

It was the third year for the award presentation, which Ted Pedas founded.

Pedas, who handles and funds the awards, established them to honor the time, dedication and talents that each recipient gives to the community.

Pedas, a former teacher, Farrell High School graduate and lifelong Farrell citizen, also established the Hall of Fame award to honor graduates who have helped build the legacy of Farrell schools.

Pedas was not able to attend Saturday's gala, so Farrell Mayor William Morocco presented each winner with a certificate recognizing their meaningful, positive and significant contributions to their respective communities.

Riley Smoot Jr., who is chief of police for Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Department, was lauded for his professionalism and enthusiasm within the department and his participation in programs such as D.A.R.E., Sharon/Farrell Weed and Seed and Communities that Care. He's also a football official for Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association, and he coaches Farrell girls' softball. Smoot has been with the Farrell police department since 1979 and became a sergeant in 1982. Smoot is married to Cheryl and is father to Ashley, a sophomore at Slippery Rock University, and Allyson, a junior at Farrell Area High School.

Gabino "Gabby" Madrazo was honored for serving on the Farrell Area School Board in the late 1960's. He's been a member of Farrell Kiwanis Club for 45 years and served twice as club president. Madrazo has been chairman of the club's Pancake Day for 45 years and is a 50-year member of Farrell Boosters. He was a former member of Farrell Recreation Commission for 35 years and was a member of the Farrell Centennial Committee in 2001. Madrazo has been an extensive supporter of Farrell girls volleyball and is still among those Farrell area high sports fans who attend as many away competitions as possible.

Jessie McFarland is a seventh-grader at Farrell Area Middle School and was honored for her care and compassion for others. The daughter of Duane and Roberta McFarland of Wheatland, Jessie has received numerous awards including bonds from Aramark, Duferco, Farrell Corp., Elementary PTO, Family Counseling and Children's Services and other special academic awards. She also received the gifted support award, the President's Academic award, a special art award and music recognition. Twelve-year-old Jessie was also a Farrell Area Elementary School representative in the Herald Spelling Bee for three consecutive years, and she was named valedictorian during the sixth grade recognition day.

Andrew Mastrian III, 18, was commended for his responsible, caring and encouraging ways towards others. A son of Andrew and Tina Mastrian, of Farrell, Andrew won a scholarship to Kent State University, which he plans to use to study aeronautics in the fall. He also received a Farrell Area School District Alumni Association Industrial Arts Award, Duferco Award, Ted Pedas Motivational Award and a Farrell Boosters Club award. Andrew was in the National Honor Society and has a pilot's license.

In addition to a certificte from the city, each recipient also received a $500 prize.

Farrell Area School District Alumni Association gives an annual award to someone who has put in many years or has much enthusiasm toward the district. The person could be either an employee or member of the association, Morocco said.

This year the association gave its blue and gold award to George Pedas, Ted's brother who heads technical education and support for the district. Pedas is responsible for the district's computer systems and other areas of communications.

"The award program was successful and the homecoming was enjoyable," Morocco said.

Ted Pedas Awards — Nomination Forms

Ted Pedas — News Articles

2003 - Farrell 'Citizen of the Year' Honorees

[Masthead - Herald]

Five citizens honored
Farrell's second recognition program held

By Larissa Theodore
Herald Staff Writer
The Herald (Sharon, Pa) — July 15, 2003

[2003 Farrell Honorees] Five Farrell residents were feted Saturday during the City of Farrell's second recognition program at the Farrell Area School District's Anthony J. Paulekas Stadium.

Mayor William Morocco bestowed Citizen of the Year awards to Marjorie J. Richards and Dave DeMasy. There were also two Junior Citizens of the Year: Steven Fraley and Geremy Brown.

And Farrell Superintendent Richard Rubano presented the Farrell Area School District Alumni Association's "Blue and Gold" award to band director James Scanga Jr. The award, which has been handed out for the past 10 years, goes to a deserving Farrell High School alumni who contributes back to and benefits the district in a positive way.

Ms. Richards was honored for her lifetime achievements as a role model and professional. In 1944 she was the first kindergarten teacher in the Farrell School District. During her award acceptance, she spoke of her experiences teaching in the district for more than a year before she decided to leave her job.

She left, she said, because she knew too many people who, on more than one occasion, would poke their heads into her classroom to say hello, as if kindergarten wasn't so important.

Ms. Richards, who was born and raised in Farrell, spoke about her father, a former Farrell school board member, and earlier requests she made to the board in hopes of installing kindergarten in Farrell. When that position came up, she was the first to be contacted about it, she said.

The unnamed woman who nominated Ms. Richards for the award happened to be a bilingual student from that first kindergarten class.

"I had the honor of being one of a dozen she was charged with," the nominator said. "She had a way of bringing out the best in us and also had the challenge, the presence of teaching a bilingual child, me."

Ms. Richards would sit the girl between two boys who did not speak fluent English so that they might be at ease in the classroom. Those two students were the late Farrell Superintendent John Sava and Farrell School District's main benefactor, Ted Pedas, who initiated the awards for the city.

Dave DeMasy spoke of his experiences living in Farrell and his relationship with the black community.

DeMasy, who has served on many committees directly impacting programs to better Farrell, was nominated by a unanimous person.

"Dave has courage, loyalty, faithfulness and perseverance, sometimes against great odds, but continued to work to one common goal...to make Farrell a better place for all to live," the nominator wrote.

DeMasy was honorably discharged from the military after serving more than two years in Germany. He also served on Farrell Council, as a police officer, a truant officer, was one of the original donors to the Prince of Peace center in Farrell and has committed his time to the city with various volunteer and fundraising-efforts. He has received many other awards, including a plaque from Farrell Boosters for 50 years of membership and volunteering and a certificate of appreciation from the 475th Quartermaster for services rendered during Operation Desert Storm.

The first Junior Citizen of the Year award went to Steven Fraley, a 2003 graduate of Farrell High School. The son of Tim and Brenda Fraley, Steven received the $32,000 Tower Scholarship and will attend Westminster College this fall to major in secondary English education and theater. He will continue his band career from Farrell as a member of Westminster's Titan Marching and Symphonic Band. While working four years as a waiter at the Sharon Hot Dog Shop, Steven tutored students in various academic subjects.

As a FHS student he performed the lead role in three of four musical plays that he auditioned for, was selected for PMEA District Band, played in Mercer County Band grades 9 through 12, made the National Honor Roll list, was an All-American Scholar and was listed in Who's Who Among American High School Students and Who's Who Among Foreign Language Students.

Geremy Brown, 13, received the Junior Citizen of the Year award for his brave conduct June 9 when he helped a 75-year-old neighbor while walking home from school.

Florence Antonino had fallen outside her home and was crying for help when Geremy found her. He ran to a neighbor's home, asked them to call 911 and returned to Mrs. Antonino's side until emergency workers arrived. He even helped emergency workers place the gurney into the ambulance.

The son of Elton and Andrea Brown is a student at Farrell Area Middle School.

This is the second year for the award recognition, as proposed and initiated by Ted Pedas and a part of Farrell's Homecoming celebration. Nomination forms are made available through Farrell High School's administration office and city hall. A panel of three council members, three school board members and three city residents select the honorees.

Ted Pedas Awards — Nomination Forms

Ted Pedas — News Articles

2002 - Farrell 'Citizen of the Year' Honorees

[Masthead - Herald]

Town hails its own at Homecoming

By Joe Pinchot
Herald Staff Writer
The Herald (Sharon, Pa) — July 14, 2002

When the village is done raising a child, sometimes that child stays in the village and contributes to the raising of the next generation of children.

Farrell honored three people Saturday that are setting the standard for how that next generation will be raised, and two members of that generation who are following their lead.

On the last day of Farrell Homecoming, the city named Annette Morrison and Frank Faylo Farrell Citizens of the Year, Shar-Dai Peagler and Jordan Wilkins Junior Citizens of the Year, and Charles Sanitate winner of the Farrell Area School District Alumni Association Blue and Gold Award.

School superintendent Richard R. Rubano Jr. said the Farrell community can learn something from the awardees.

"Each and every one of us has an obligation to model that behavior for our young people," he said.

Ms. Morrison, honored for her volunteer work as cheerleader adviser, her work with athletic groups, at the Salvation Army and at Cedar Avenue Church of God and with Mercer County Housing Authority in organizing the May Ball and programs at the community center in Farrell, described herself as a product of the village.

"Through the teachers and the raising of Farrell, I am what I am today," said the assistant director of the Prince of Peace Center, Farrell.

Ms. Morrison, of 250 Shenango Blvd., said she learned the spirit of volunteerism from her father, Cecil Hulley, who died when she was 14.

"I never ask for any recognition," she said.

Faylo, of 802 Wallis Ave., can be seen around town cutting grass in vacant lots, trimming weeds along sidewalks, picking up garbage and shoveling snow.

While acknowledging it's important for the town to look its best, Mayor William Morocco said there is too much territory for city employees to maintain all the property it is responsible for.

"We just cannot do it all," Morocco said.

Which is where Faylo comes in.

Faylo showed pictures of a block of Emerson Avenue before he started work on it and afterward. The sidewalk was grown over with grass, but Faylo clipped it off, leaving a sidewalk that looked close to brand new.

"The sidewalks of Farrell haven't been cleaned up since they were installed," he said, asking for volunteers to help him.

Faylo, 71, who was honored with a city proclamation in 1998, said he's out "just about every day."

"I love it," said the retired former employee of Westinghouse Electric Corp. -- Sharon Transformer Division. "It's good exercise for me. It helps my immune system, helps keep my free of disease and keeps my weight down."

Faylo said he plans to use the $500 that comes with the award to repair his lawn mowers and buy gasoline.

Shar-Dai's volunteer activities include helping organize the May Ball, grading papers and filing for her teachers and typing for the Steel City Terrace Resident Council, of which her mother, Ramona, is secretary.

"I like volunteering in my community and helping out," said Shar-Dai, 16, of 210 Wallis Ave., the daughter of Lonnie Black of Grafton, Ohio.

Lisa Oliver, who teaches English at the high school, touted Shar-Dai for founding Kids Inspiring Dreams, an after-school program in which she tutors younger students, helps them with homework and works to improve their learning skills.

"Shar-Dai is concerned about the youth in her community and is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of children," Ms. Oliver said.

Jordan was not present to receive his award. The elementary school student from 333 Hamilton was honored for his politeness, courteousness and positive attitude.

Sanitate, a 1963 Farrell High graduate, is the school principal and has been employed by the district for 34 years in roles such as secondary English teacher, dean of students and conduct specialist.

"The students are my number one concern," said the West Middlesex resident.

Sanitate called the award humbling.

"This will definitely have a place in my house," he said. "I might even make a shrine to this."

Ted Pedas created the Citizen and Junior Citizen awards last summer at the Farrell Centennial, when he was named Farrell Centurion.

Ted Pedas Awards — Nomination Forms

Ted Pedas — News Articles

Links to Ted Pedas, Farrell Alumni, FASD School District
and Farrell, Pennsylvania

E-mail:   Ted Pedas