The Prince William Chamber of Commerce is hosting the 31st annual Prince William Valor Awards to honor our county’s “superheroes”.
According to a release, the event will be held on March 23 from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Hylton Performing Arts Center at 10960 George Mason Circle in Manassas.
“The Prince William Valor Awards are held annually to recognize the men and women in uniform who go above and beyond the call of duty in keeping our community and its people safe and secure: local superheroes,” stated a release.
Members of police and fire departments in Prince William, Manassas, and Manassas Park will be recognized.
For this year’s ceremony, there will also be a special recognition for Prince William County Police Department Officers Jesse Hempen, David McKeown, and Ashley Guindon. Hempen and McKeown were seriously wounded during a domestic call and Guindon was killed during the incident on February 27, 2016.
“This year we hope to fill the auditorium of the Hylton Performing Arts Center with the people of this community who appreciate the sacrifices made by public safety officials. In a year when the climate on social media and across the country has been charged with fear and uncertainty, the Prince William region has been blessed to be served by forward-thinking and fair-minded public servants who also put their lives on the line in ways that we almost never hear about. Our Valor Awards shine the light on these brave and selfless individuals. I am asking that if you are at all able to attend the 2017 event, that you would strongly consider buying a ticket and joining us to show your appreciation,” stated Chamber Chairman C.C. Bartholomew in a release.
More on the awards and event, from a release:
Awards are given out in the Valor and Investigative Categories. Valor Awards recognize bravery and heroism, often in life-threatening situations where quick thinking and ingenuity are valuable. The Investigative Awards highlight work like crime scene processing, evidence analysis and detailed work leading to the successful closing of major cases.
What should you expect when you attend the Valor Awards event?
The event opens with a reception catered by Okra’s Cajun Creole in the Didlake Grand Foyer. Attendees include award recipients, their families, Chiefs of the local fire and police departments, volunteer fire and rescue personnel, elected officials, leaders in the business community and you.
At approximately 3:00 p.m. you and an anticipated crowd of 400 will be ushered into Merchant Hall for the awards ceremony, which opens with the presentation of colors by the cross-jurisdictional public safety color guard and a benediction. Aaron Gilchrist, Anchor of NBC 4’s News4 Today will serve as Master of Ceremonies, reading moving accounts of the valorous acts of our men and women in uniform. Award plaques are presented to the honorees by their Chiefs. Following receipt of their awards, each honoree is given a commemorative pin and personally thanked by local and state elected officials before returning to their seats. Youth for Tomorrow is the Speaker Sponsor.
“The Prince William Chamber takes great pride in recognizing those who perform extraordinary acts of self-sacrifice and bravery in the line of duty. Year after year I am awed and sometimes saddened at the things our Valor Award winners have endured. You can tell by the expressions on their faces as their efforts are recounted before a live audience; they were just doing what they feel called to do. But as leaders in this community, it’s vital that we pause to make sure they know how important they are to us. We are hopeful that the community will join with us in honoring those who risk so much to protect our lives, our livelihoods and our quality of life,” said Chamber President & CEO Debbie Jones.
This event is open to the public; pre-registration is encouraged. Tickets are $25 and include reception, ceremony attendance and a commemorative program featuring the inspirational stories of the Valor Awards recipients. Dress is business casual. To register, go to PWChamber.org/Valor, or call 703.368.6600. Benefactor Sponsorships are available for anyone interested in providing tickets for award recipients and their guests!