Robert Conelley, middle, received the annual Lake Country Citizen of the Year Award from Mayor James Baker (left) and Oceola Fish and Game Club president Nick Kozub. - Contributed

Lake Country’s Citizen of the Year never expected to win award

“I was totally blown away, I had no idea,” Robert Conelley said.

Robert Conelley had no idea he would be recognized as Lake Country’s Citizen of the Year.

“I was totally blown away, I had no idea,” he said. While attending the annual award ceremony at The Oceola Fish and Game Club’s for the Sax Koyama – Citizen of the Year Award last month, his neighbour was the one to actually nominate him.

“All of a sudden they call my name and I said ‘what’s going on here?’ and everyone at the table was video taping me.”

Conelley is involved with the Lake Country Seniors Society, the Oyama Legion, the Lake Country Car Club, the Winfield Curling Club, and the Rotary Blood Donar Clinics.

READ MORE: Nominations open for Lake Country’s Citizen of the Year Award

The award is held every year to honour an exceptional volunteer in the community.

“I remember when my grandfather won in 1989,” said Nick Kozub, club president, in a previous interview with the Calendar.

“It’s recognizing people in the community that go above and beyond. It goes back to our club’s grassroots with being a volunteer-based run club,” he said.

Usually, the club only gets a few nominations each year. Last year, the club had two nominations and there were a few years where the award wasn’t given out, Kozub said.

READ MORE: Vandalism of fish incubators blow to well-known Lake Country family

Last year, Kozub was going to give out the award for the first time as the club’s new president, but a snowstorm prevented the recipient from accepting it.

READ MORE: Okanagan documentary wins prestigious award

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READ MORE: Okanagan is home for CCMA award winner

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