BRANTLAKE-For years, Barbara Wilson of Chestertown has worked - without a thought of recognition - to enrich the lives of others in the upcounty region.
Whether it was establishing history or cultural programs or organizing fundraisers, she's worked with dedication and diligence to make life in the North Country more fulfilling for all.
On May 12, she stepped into the spotlight, however, receiving praises and honor for her years of work on behalf of the community, as the North Warren Chamber of Commerce presented Wilson with their annual V.I.P. award.
Barbara Thomas, President of the Chamber, presented the V.I.P. award to Wilson, which has been bestowed on many area luminaries since 1971.
Thomas noted that Wilson has been instrumental in bringing educational programs to the area that include such offerings as "History Alive," a 2005 event celebrating veterans, the 2007 "Stitches in Time" quilt exhibit held at the North Warren High School, and a visit of Russian librarians to the area in 2008.
Wilson served as a Charter member of the History Through Voices committee which created a local history audio program that is part of the Chester Library's website. She also helps organize and promote Chester Library's annual wine tasting event, as well as other ongoing programs.
Wilson is past chair of the Friends of the Chester Library, and has been active with the Chester Historical Society, where she assisted with publicity and helped plan a Revolutionary War re-enactment at the Dynamite Hill Recreation Area.
Also, she has been active in promoting the Art in Chester gallery of the North Country Arts Center.
Wilson is dedicated to boosting the cultural offerings in the Chestertown area, others have noted. In her spare time, she's been spending a substantial time, along with her husband Dennis honing her skills at the centuries-old art of chip carving, a northern European craft.
Wilson is a retired elementary teacher from Indian Lake Central School where she taught second and fourth grades. She and her husband, Dennis, spent ten years teaching and living abroad before moving to the Adirondacks.
"We're very honored to be able to present our 2001 VIP Award to Barbara Wilson," Thomas said, as the banquet attendees applauded Wilson and her lengthy record of community service. "You deserve this award for your years of dedicated work on behalf of area residents."
Wilson deferred credit to others, and noted she was very happy to be involved in the work, particularly with the culturally-related programs.