Sidney Pullin named Citizen of the Year
by Kenda Nelson
Mar 11, 2011 | 2395 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
More than 300 people were on hand for the annual  Chamber of Commerce Banquet Saturday evening in the Expo Center. Above, last year’s citizen of the year Francalene Slack announces this year’s winner, Sidney Pullin.
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“If my dad and mom were still alive, they’d be real proud,” said Sidney Pullin, the 2011 Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year.

As Pullin stood on stage at the Expo Center Saturday evening during the annual chamber banquet, he said he was so impressed by the other nominees, he didn’t believe his name would be called.

The lifelong county resident worked for the city for 40 years, 35 of which were as the superintendent of utilities. He began his career in 1960 and retired in 2000.

Since then he has been in many of the homes in Refugio, helping people with their plumbing problems, usually at below the going rate for a licensed plumber.

Simply put, Pullin likes to help people.

“I was brought up saying ‘yes, sir’ and ‘no, sir,’ ‘yes, ma’am’ and ‘no, ma’am’,” he says.

He also says he’s a proud citizen of Refugio County.

“We live in a very good county,” he said. “People are always willing to help. If you look for it, you’ll find it.”

The outstanding students from each county school were introduced to the biggest banquet crowd in more than a decade. Katie Bernal of RHS, Joseph Cisneros of WHS and Kenna Rohan of A-THS were selected.

The outstanding students included Madi Preston and Stephanie Ordaz of RHS; Melissa Cisneros and Joseph Perez of WHS; and Joseph Alvarado and Chelsea Martinez of A-THS.

Businesses and individuals decorated their tables to highlight their business.

The food, prepared by Manny Govella of Refugio and the student chefs from Del Mar College, served an array of desserts and fruit, after a meal of filet mignon, green beans with roasted almonds, mashed potatoes and rolls.

“The banquet was real nice,” Pullin said. “I was so proud of all the young students.”

Entertainment was provided by an array of local talent. Last year’s citizen of the year, Francalene Slack, played music selections on the piano, and singers were Brittni Wade, Kasie Fierova and Sara Lopez, Ali Cosetti, and the Fierova brothers on guitar.

Large palm trees flanked the four corners of the Expo Center and pots of flowers and greenery graced a fountain at the entrance. All the plants were provided by Chris Naylor of Bayside Nursery.

“From the chef who headed the cooking to the plants, to the businesses who decorated, to the talented individuals who performed on stage, to all the outstanding citizen nominees and all the outstanding students, Saturday night was a glimpse of Refugio County and what it has to offer,” said Lenny Anzaldua, chamber president and emcee for the festivities.
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