The Rotary Club of Leesburg is launching an awards program and fundraiser to commemorate one of the town’s most iconic businessmen and civic leaders, Stanley Caulkins.
The club is presenting its Rotary STAR awards this year for the first time. STAR stands for Stanley F. Caulkins, Tributes, Awards and Recognition. Caulkins, who died in January at the age of 92, was a longtime Rotarian. He owned and operated Caulkins Jewelers for 61 years, was a member of the Leesburg Town Council, and a founding member of the Leesburg Airport Commission in 1962. He helped lead the push to build Leesburg Executive Airport.
“With the passing of Stanley, we thought wouldn’t it be great to honor him and his impression on economic development in Leesburg,” Katie Gould, Rotary Club of Leesburg’s president-elect, said.
The nonprofit organization will award Rotary STAR awards in three categories: Lifetime Achievement in Economic Development, Innovation in Economic Development, and Creative Use of Social Media in Economic Development.
Gould said that each of the categories recognizes a different aspect of Caulkin’s service in town. He was steady in his leadership as a business owner, mentor and entrepreneur; he was innovative; and he even demonstrated ingenuity using social media, she noted. “With his store, they were always pushing things out on his Facebook page and really being creative.”
The Rotary Club is accepting nominations of individuals or businesses to receive STAR awards. Nominations are open for individuals who work or live in Leesburg, as well as businesses in Leesburg. Gould said the club may open it up to all of Loudoun County next year. Deadline to nominate is Aug. 10.
To celebrate the first installment of STAR awards recipients, the Rotary Club will hold an awards ceremony Saturday, Oct. 13, at the Leesburg Executive Airport. Cost to attend the event is $75, and includes a buffet dinner, wine, beer and sodas. The evening will also include a silent auction, raffle and live music from the Curve Crew.
The Rotary Club will distribute proceeds from ticket sales to area charities. Club leaders are looking for sponsors to help cover the cost of the event, with platinum, gold and silver sponsorship packages ranging from $5,000 to $500. Gould said a special thanks goes to the event’s first sponsor, ProJect Aviation, who is donating the use of the airport hangar for the event.
The STAR awards event will serve as the Rotary Club of Leesburg’s big annual fundraiser, replacing the Rehau Resolution Race, held on New Year’s Day for 20 years. Gould said the Rotary Club’s leadership decided to discontinue the race because so many races had popped up over the years, making it tough to compete.
Nominate an individual or business for a STAR award, purchase tickets to the Oct. 13 awards ceremony, and learn about sponsorship opportunities at rotaryclubofleesburgevents.com.