ELLINWOOD —Leon and Linda Sobba, longtime Ellinwood residents, were named the Ellinwood Rotary Club’s 2012 Distinguished Citizens at the club’s annual banquet. In addition, the club is celebrating its 75th anniversary, beginning on Dec. 1, 1936.
Committee member Kent Roth presented the Distinguished Citizens Award. "On behalf of the Rotary Club, I wish to extend a heartfelt thank you to Leon and Linda Sobba, the 2012 Distinguished Citizens of Ellinwood," he said.
Roth spoke of the long history of service the two have had in the community. "In 2009, both retired from teaching, Leon after 41 years, and Linda after 35 years," said Roth. "Leon was stage manager for high school plays and Linda taught home economics and sponsored many student clubs. Following retirement, Linda and Leon have remained active.
"Leon has volunteered to handle lights and stage as the theater manager for Barton Community College as well as high school productions," he said. "Leon continues to give generously of his musical talent as the regular organist for services at his church. He also sees that the Christmas decorations are up each year.
"Linda is active in the St. Joseph Parish, the hospital auxiliary, and serves as an officer in the Ellinwood Quilt Club," Roth said.
The couple was nominated by the Preceptor Delta Zeta Sorority.
The Sobba’s were surprised by the award as they were asked to attend the banquet to represent the quilt club.
"It is very much a surprise," said Linda.
Leon and Linda have one daughter, Leah, and three sons, Lyle, Leo and Luke. Their son Luke was present at the event.
After dinner, the Mystic Blues, an Ellinwood High School singing group, opened the evening with their contest music including the song, "Ava Maria."
President Justin Lear then presented the Paul Harris Fellowship to Terry Brown and Monty and Catherine Strecker. The Paul Harris Fellowship is based upon donations.
In addition, Keith Hooper, RC district governor 5670, spoke on the importance of Rotary Club and membership in the Rotary Club. The Rotary Club is a service organization that promotes "Service Above Self."