East Kentucky Leadership Awards banquet held Thursday in Pikeville

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Published: Apr. 28, 2022 at 5:57 PM EDT
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PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) - The 2022 East Kentucky Leadership Awards banquet was held Thursday evening at the Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville.

The annual event honors Eastern Kentuckians for their exceptional leadership to the region.

Business leaders, public officials and people who have worked to reimagine Eastern Kentucky communities receive awards recognizing their contributions to their communities.

Senior Advisor to Governor Andy Beshear, Rocky Adkins, delivered a keynote address recognizing some of those people.

”All eyes on Eastern Kentucky as far as I’m concerned,” said Adkins. “And I think this East Kentucky Leadership conference really helps focus on that, and lift that up and help build that momentum that we need so bad.”

The awards recognize people who, one way or another, are contributing to the region and its growth.

Some people, like Marlana VanHoose, contribute through culture and the arts. In her case it was her beautiful renditions of the National Anthem sung before events that earned her the Culture/Arts Award.

”It feels super,” said VanHoose. “It feels awesome, it’s a blessing for me to win this.”

Other people are pioneers in media and technology.

”It’s really just overwhelming sometimes to think about,” said Daryl Maynard, the Media and Technology Award winner. “You know, just work hard just to try to bring technology to my friends and neighbors here in Eastern Kentucky.”

Even the work a WWII veteran and a Bishop are recognized.

”I was on my way out of town,” said the Carolyn Sundy Award winner, Willie Lamb. “All packed up to go out of town over there. And my daughter and son had come to get me. And when they called and said that they had an award for me, we canceled that. We’ll go tomorrow and...I thank the Lord for it.”

While these award recognize work that is already having an impact, leaders at the banquet said they hope the night will serve as inspiration so future generations can continue moving these mountains forward.

WYMT will profile this years winners all week on Mountain News at Six and if you missed any you can watch them online.

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