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Dundee Couple to be Honored With Stork Award for Community Service


From the food pantry to the library to school plays to their beloved Baptist Church, there aren’t many corners in the Yates County village of Dundee that haven’t been touched – and elevated – by Alan and Lew Ann Giles.

The couple, lifelong Dundee residents and graduates of Dundee Central School, are being honored by Keuka College for their extensive community spirit and selfless public service with this year’s Donald and Corinne Stork Award for Community Service. The award will be presented on Tuesday, Aug. 13, during a noon luncheon in the Geiser Dining Commons, inside the Dahlstrom Student Center at Keuka College.

“We are surprised and amazed to receive this award for doing things that bring us joy,” said Lew Ann. “It is a humbling honor to be named when we are merely part of a larger community of like-minded people each doing our best for our church, the village of Dundee, and the Dundee School District.”

The couple’s list of community service is extensive. Alan, a former Starkey Town Council member, has been a Rotary member for more than 45 years and led the community’s “Bookcase for Every Child” project for a decade. He is also a longtime volunteer with the Dundee-area health improvement project Our Town Rocks.

“My father and mother built a good grocery business in Dundee, and taught me that, ‘if you take good care of your customers, they will take good care of you,’” said Alan. “We found that to be true. The Dundee community took very good care of us, so we strive to continue to serve them as we can.”

Lew Ann, a former Cornell Cooperative Extension-Yates County board member, has also been active with Our Town Rocks and volunteers weekly at the Dundee Library. She serves on the Council of
Churches and has assisted at numerous plays and other events in the Dundee schools. The couple have also volunteered with local food pantries and have served in a variety of capacities with the Dundee Baptist Church, at which Lew Ann is a lay minister.

“It’s not an exaggeration to say that if you want something done, if you need help with any project, or if you know a family in need, all you need to do is ask,” said Penn Yan resident Lauren Snyder, who nominated the Gileses for the award. “Alan and Lew Ann will be there in a heartbeat to help in any way they can.”

In doing so, they epitomize the Stork Award, which is given annually by Keuka College to recognize outstanding community members who exemplify the College’s commitment to promoting individual initiative for the common good.

“Alan and Lew Ann have been integral members of the Dundee community for decades, readily offering their time, resources, and expertise to various causes and initiatives,” said Keuka College Director of Field Period® Program and Community Relations Kathy Waye.

“Their selflessness, generosity, and willingness to lend a helping hand to anyone in need make them true champions of community service and deserving recipients of this year’s Stork Award.”

Tickets for the luncheon are $17. Seating is limited, so advanced reservations are advised. Register online before the reservation deadline of August 5. For additional information, contact Kathy Waye at (315) 279 5602 or email [email protected]

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