An Alpena couple with a lengthy history of service to Catholic Human Services has been honored with the agency's Florida Tellier Award.
Ed and Rosemary Bastow were presented the award at a luncheon held Friday at St. Anne's Parish Center. It marked only the third time in the agency's 65-year history that the accolade was given out.
"It is one of the highlights of my career at Catholic Human Services to present this award to Ed and Rosemary," said CHS Regional Director Joe Garant.
News Photo by Diane Speer
On hand for the recent presentation of the Catholic Human Services Florida Tellier Award were, from left, CHS Regional Director Joe Garant, recipients Ed and Rosemary Bastow, Bill Morford, the former CHS regional director who originally created the award, and Dave Martin, CEO of CHS.
The award recognizes the Bastows for "being shining examples for others, and enhancing the mission and vision of Catholic Human Services."
The couple first became involved with CHS in 1957 and then continued a decades-long association with the agency.
"They have dedicated an incredible amount of time in service to others," Garant said. "They are an incredible example for all of us to follow, and it has been a privilege for me to know both of them."
Ed Bastow expressed his gratitude at being recognized and shared a few brief remarks with those gathered for the luncheon.
"It's awesome and very unexpected," he said. "I'm very pleased and grateful."
Bastow shared a quote by Albert Schweitzer that touched on his belief regarding service: "The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve."
Before giving out the award, Garant provided a short history of the agency that was started by the Catholic Church in Alpena in 1946 and was originally called Catholic Family Services. He outlined several name changes and address changes that occurred over the years, including in 1994 when the agency moved to its current location on Ripley Street.
Garant also touched on the history of the award that was named in honor of Florida Tellier, who worked as the first case worker for the agency. The award was created in 1986 in recognition of the agency's 40th anniversary by Bill Morford, who served as regional director for CHS at that time.
The initial recipient was Tommy Potvin, then an employee of the agency's Today Home, a facility where prior to Birchwood, people with alcohol dependency issues sought to detox and stabilize. St. Ignatius Catholic Church in Rogers City was the only other recipient for having provided space for CHS programming.
"Then the award went dormant a long time, but we are resurrecting it now," Garant said.
Along with a number of CHS employees who came out in support of the Bastows, the couple's daughter, Christie Bastow, and granddaughter and husband, Anne and Patrick Heraghty, were in attendance.