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Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce inducts 7 into Hall of Fame

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The Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce holds its 11th Hall of Fame awards dinner at Weymouth Country Club on Friday evening. CINDY BREDA / GAZETTE

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MEDINA — The Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce inducted six people and one organization at its Hall of Fame awards dinner Friday.

Jaclyn Ringstmeier, executive director, said it was its 11th Hall of Fame event that the chamber has held since it formed in 1938.

“It tends to happen every five years,” she said. “However, with this year being the bicentennial, we moved this class up — the last hall of fame was in 2015.”

Ringstmeier said the inductees are selected by a committee of volunteers who have great insight into the history of business in Medina.

“It is such a privilege to honor these individuals. All of these inductees have given and continue to give so much of their time and expertise to a variety of areas,” she said. “The community is a better place because they choose to call Medina home.”

The Gazette spoke to the 2018 inductees Friday during the awards dinner.

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William "Bill" Bittner, Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame inductee

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William ‘Bill’ Bittner

Bittner, is a Army veteran and businessman who owned two companies in Medina, Multiple Plans Agency Inc. and W.R. Bittner and Associates.

He was past president of the of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors-Ohio. Bittner is a past president of the Medina County United Way Board and the Medina Area Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Westfield Village Council for 44 years and was council president for 42 of those years.

“I think it’s a privilege and I’m just enjoying it,” Bittner said.

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Charles Foster Tad Coleman Jr., Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame inductee

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Charles Foster ‘Tad’ Coleman Jr.

Coleman is chairman and owner of Standard Welding and Steel Products, a fourth-generation company in Medina.

He was a longtime member of the Old Phoenix National Bank board of directors prior to its merger with First Merit Bank and was a board member for the Medina General Hospital for 28 years with 13 of those as chairman of the board.

He has been an active member for many years with the Medina Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s an honor (to be inducted), but it’s not something that I ever thought (would happen) I just did what I did because I loved it and I love Medina, so this is nice,” Coleman said.

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Barbara Dzur, Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame inductee

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Barbara Dzur

Dzur is an economic developer and former educator.

She was the executive director of the Brunswick Chamber of Commerce and director of Workforce Development for Medina County.

Dzur opened the first Workforce Development Center and is a founding board member of the Leadership Medina County, the Medina County Women’s Endowment Fund, and the Trinity Rose Foundation.

She also served on the boards for Medina County Historical Society, Medina County Performing Art Foundation and The United Way of Medina County.

“It’s a total surprise, but I’m very honored,” Dzur said.

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Gary Hallman, Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame inductee

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Gary Hallman

Hallman is former president and CEO of Medina General Hospital.

Hallman started his career in banking before transitioning to health care where he oversaw the growth of the hospital as well as the merger with the Cleveland Clinic.

He was a member, vice president and president of the Kiwanis Club of Medina and was a founding board member of Leadership Medina.

Hallman served as board member and board president of the Medina County Economic Development Corporation.

“I’m very thankful … it’s a nice honor and I’m overwhelmed by it. It’s nothing that I expected,” Hallman said.

George Paidas

Paidas is a retired banker and former teacher and coach at Medina Schools.

Paidas is still active in the Ohio Bankers League. He served on the Medina City Planning Commission and on Medina City Charter review commissions.

Paidas is a Leadership Medina County founding board member and past president of the Medina Kiwanis Club and the Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce.

He also served as a trustee for the Medina City Schools Foundation and Highland Schools Foundation.

“The people that are here have been the heartbeat for Medina for so long that I’m honored to be with them. I’m not just talking about the inductees. I’m talking about everybody in this place,” Paidas said.

“This is like a reunion to me. There’s a wonderful spirit of cooperation, purpose and kindness; it’s just the Medina I’ve known. It’s nice to get back to it.

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Lloyd Vaughn, Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame inductee

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Lloyd Vaughn

Vaughn is a Medina native who served in the U.S. Army National Guard.

He was in the insurance business for over 40 years.

During his career he was a member of the Ohio Independent Insurance Agents Association.

Vaughn was a member of the Medina Kiwanis Club and Medina Jaycees where he served as president.

He has been a member of the Medina Masonic Lodge for over 50 years and was the master and past district deputy grand master of the Grand Lodge of Ohio.

“I’m on the receiving end,” Vaughn said. “For many years I was the inductor — I inducted many of the other classes. I can’t believe it’s me. I’m honored.”

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Friends of the Cemetery, Greater Medina Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame Organization inductee

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Friends of the Cemetery

The nonprofit organization is dedicated to the beautification, preservation, maintenance, and appreciation of Spring Grove Cemetery, founded in 1833, and Old Town graveyard, founded in 1818.

The group has accomplished significant projects like the restoration of the 1884 Spring Grove Chapel and through their advocacy have gotten the Spring Grove Cemetery recognized and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Friends of the Cemetery organized and funded the daylong Civil War Encampment and re-enactment events on Memorial Day as their contribution to Medina’s Bicentennial celebration.

“We’ve been working for 21 years and have been thrilled (to receive this award),” said Teresa Merkle, board member of Medina Friends of the Cemetery.

The event was held at the Weymouth Country Club, 3946 Weymouth Road. Ringstmeier said the next Hall of Fame Awards is planned for 2023.

Contact reporter Cindy Breda at (330) 721-4012 or cbreda@medina-gazette.com.

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