The White Hall Chamber of Commerce held its 2014 Community Awards Banquet on March 11 at White Hall High School.
The most prestigious award of the evening went to Fire Chief Sandy Castleberry, who was presented the W.F. “Mood” Award. The Mood Award, names for one of the city’s founding fathers, is presented annually to a distinguished volunteers who has displayed consistent volunteerism in the spirit of Moody.
Mayor Noel Foster, who presented the awards, said Castleberry has served with the White Hall Volunteer Fire Department for 30 years and noted that the chief’s community involvement ranges from working with the fire department’s Santa program to installing flag poles at the police department, where he is employed.
“No matter the task, his leadership and consistency in caring for the community has earned him the Moody Award, “Foster said.
The Volunteer Fireman on the Year Award went to Eddie Parsley, a retired Pine Bluff Fire Department captain who now serves as deputy chief in White Hall.
Josh Mizell was presented the Volunteer Police officer of the Year Award. Foster said Mizell joined the White Hall Police Department in 2006 and volunteered 320 hours for the department in 2013.
Foster presented the Senior Citizen Award to his mother, Bernice Foster. He noted her volunteer work for the local food pantry and her active role with First Baptist Church of White Hall.
The Youth Award, presented each year to a recipient who volunteers time to work with youth, went to Joe Taylor. Foster said Taylor coaches baseball and softball teams and also coached soccer.
The Bridges-Socia Memorial Award for youth was presented to Abby Weaver, a senior at White Hall High School. Foster cited Weaver’s volunteer work through her church and school activities. Weaver is also four-year starter for the two-time defending state champion WHHS softball team and Foster said she maintains a grade-point average above 4.0.
The Clara Burton Education Award was presented to Gail Massey, a kindergarten teacher in White Hall School District. Foster said Massey has taught in White Hall schools for 34 years.
The Jitters Morgan Small Business Awards, names in honor of the city’s former mayor, was presented to Phyllis Huddleston of the Clothes Line Consignment Shop. Foster said the Clothes Line has operated in White Hall for almost 20 years and recently relocated into new space on Highway 270.
Also during the awards banquet, it was announced that White Hall’s new community center will be named in honor of Morgan, who was instrumental in conceiving the project during his tenure as mayor.