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Scouts honor distinguished citizens

A banquet applauds efforts to get African-Americans involved in Boy Scouts.

By MARY JANE PARK, Times Staff Writer
Published October 14, 2007


ST. PETERSBURG- In the 10 years since the inception of the West Central Florida Council of the Boy Scouts Distinguished Citizens Awards banquet, more than $450,000 has been raised to support the involvement of minority boys and young men in Scouting.

A decade ago, the council counted only 40 African-Americans in its programs; today the number is about 600.

This year's event, to be held in the Coliseum on Thursday, will honor J. Michael Cheezem, president and chief executive officer of JMC Communities; David P. Feaster, area president of Whitney Bank; and Darryl A. LeClair, president and chief executive officer of Echelon Corp.

The late Hubert "Bud" Rutland III, who died in April, also will be honored.

A banker, businessman and philanthropist, Rutland was an Eagle Scout. In 2006, he founded a scholarship for a minority Eagle Scout in memory of longtime African-American Scout leader LeRoy Prothro.

A new award, recognizing physical fitness, will presented at Thursday's dinner. It was created by Geoff Dyer, president of Lifestyle Family Fitness.

Mary Gardiner Evertz and Dr. Albert J. Geiger are event co-chairs.

Fast facts

If you go

What: Distinguished Citizens Awards dinner, West Central Florida Council, Boy Scouts of America.

When: 6 p.m. Thursday

Where: Coliseum, 535 Fourth Ave. N, St. Petersburg

Information: 391-3800

[Last modified October 13, 2007, 22:56:43]

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