People of the Year—Meghan Simmons & Brigitte Peters
Havre de Grace Patch recognizes the People of the Year over the final two weeks of 2011.
Patch recognizes people or groups with a People of the Year award for their contributions to Havre de Grace in 2011. Nominees were submitted by Patch readers via a submission form, email or on Facebook.
MEGHAN SIMMONS & BRIGITTE PETERS
In short, these two women are integral in helping small businesses thrive in Havre de Grace.
"The way that they work with the entire community, and with Main Street, especially. All these little things that they do, they're wonderful," City Councilwoman Barbara Wagner said.
Simmons has been called a "dynamo" and "firecracker" on repeated occasions by elected officials and business leaders for her passion and ability to find and secure grant money for the city and its business community.
An anonymous Patch reader who nominated Simmons for the People of the Year award said, "The town is prospering. Slowly, perhaps, but nevertheless growing remarkably, even in these very sluggish times. Not too many empty storefronts and new businesses moving in. ... she does not get the credit she deserves."
Simmons' success became a campaign point in the spring, when then City Councilman and mayoral challenger Mitch Shank said he'd promote Simmons to a director position.
"Nobody has a more positive effect for our city outside of Havre de Grace than (Simmons)," Shank told Patch during the lead-up to the election.
Peters is responsible for promoting the city and oversees a number of events in town.
All three major Baltimore news outlets visited Havre de Grace in the past 12 months to promote various events in the city, and the city's historic downtown district was recognized by Maryland Life magazine.
Peters also continues well beyond her own work hours to make sure the city's events go off without a hitch. Recently, she has been working closely with volunteers in organizing the behind-the-scenes efforts for next year's War of 1812 bicentennial.
Both Peters and Simmons submitted nominations for other community leaders, suggesting their efforts fell within their job descriptions. However, both were recognized repeatedly throughout the last 12 months for their service to the citizens and businesses in Havre de Grace—and for going above and beyond the required duties of their positions with the city.
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