Kiwanis Club honors one of its own as citizen of year

Kiwanis Club of Grand Junction Citizen of the Year on his work with the Aktion Club, which helps developmentally disabled adults. Photo is Special to the Sentinel

Rick Nisley showed up for the Kiwanis Club of Grand Junction meeting this past week without realizing he had been tricked.

Nisley was to receive the Citizen of the Year award from the service club during its annual Charter Luncheon on Thursday. That is not what organizers told Nisley.

Instead, they told him to prepare a PowerPoint presentation about the Kiwanis Club.

Organizers even had a pretend citizen of the year in the crowd in case Nisley started asking questions.

The tricks worked.

“I was caught completely by surprise and slightly embarrassed,” Nisley said. “It never, ever dawned on me at all. It’s overwhelming and humbling at the same time.”

Nisley, a local Kiwanis member, was presented the Citizen of the Year award for his contributions to the community, including his help organizing the Aktion Club for developmentally disabled adults.

The Kiwanis Club of Grand Junction each year honors a Grand Valley resident who contributes to the community, and the award rarely goes to a Kiwanis member.

Nisley has helped with the Kiwanis Club’s annual pancake day and Oktoberfest events.

Because of the Aktion Club, dozens of local adults are able to be in a service group and give back to the community, said Michael Moran, spokesman for the Kiwanis Club.

Perhaps the most visible community event of the Aktion Club is its annual toy drive for Toys for Tots and a shopping spree giveaway.

“It gives them a whole feeling of worth,” Nisley said of Aktion Club members.

Nisley received a plaque as citizen of the year. He was selected by a committee of Kiwanis Club members.


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