Nominations for this year’s iteration of the J. Neal Ensminger Man of the Year Award are now being accepted.

The award, which is presented during the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet, honors McMinn County men who have dedicated themselves to community service.

The J. Neal Ensminger Man of the Year Award is presented annually to one man who has made considerable contributions to the community welfare, participates in community activities, shows evidence of lasting contributions, demonstrates leadership ability and shows evidence of business progress and cooperation with individuals and civic organizations.

Nominations are sent to The Daily Post-Athenian, which sponsors the award. Previous recipients of the Man of the Year Award review the nominees’ work in the community listed in the nominations. Points are awarded to each nominee based on their community service in several categories.

The nominee who earns the most points is then selected to receive the award.

In 1953, then-DPA publisher Lowell Arterburn decided the newspaper should formally recognize civic-minded men who demonstrate devotion to cause, dedicated effort and effective leadership.

He asked his editor, Neal Ensminger, to make the rounds to the various civic organizations in town and ask for nominations. When all the votes were in, Ensminger — to his surprise — was the overwhelming choice as the very first “Man of the Year.”

To be eligible for consideration for the Man of the Year Award, nominees must be at least 40 years old and have made significant contributions to the community through their volunteer work and service.

Nominations should be made by writing a letter of recommendation detailing the reasons why the person making the nomination believes the nominee is deserving of the award.

Information regarding the nominee’s community service should be included.

The deadline for submitting nominations is 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 25, 2022. Send the nominations to Dewey Morgan, c/o The Daily Post-Athenian, P.O. Box 340, Athens, TN 37371-0340.

The nominations may also be dropped off at the newspaper’s office, located at 206 W. Washington Avenue in Athens.

Additionally, nominations may be submitted electronically by e-mail to:

Look for announcements in upcoming editions of The DPA regarding when the Chamber of Commerce 75th Annual Banquet will be held, which is where the winner will be announced.

Also at that banquet, awards will be presented for “Mother of the Year,” “Young Man of the Year,” “Woman of the Year,” “Farmer of the Year” and “Teacher of the Year.”

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