Myers highlights Difference Makers’ desire to better their community
Many members of the Greencastle and greater Putnam County community converged inside the Greencastle Christian Church Thursday evening to toast 10 individuals who have made a difference here at home.
After enjoying good company with neighbors and friends as well as a filling meal catered by Myers’ Market, the Banner Graphic highlighted the various charitable efforts of each Difference Maker nominee.
But before Sheila Holloway would be named the 2019 Difference Maker of the Year to a cheering crowd, Ruth Myers, another difference maker who knows what commitment is, rose to offer her take on what service means.
“I often get asked how retirement is,” Myers said, “and my reply is laughter.”
“I retired to work further with my passion in serving others in this community and to work along with my son,” she added. “As my husband would tell you, I went from working a 40-hour week to working 80 hours a week.”
The inaugural Difference Maker of the Year provided an online definition of such a person as “one who has an impact or effect; one who brings about change.” However, Myers went further.
“While reading the profiles of these 10 difference makers, I found some more definitions,” Myers provided.
She said that a difference maker changes someone’s perspective when they are at an all-time low and helps others when they need it most. Being kind, making everyone feel welcome and stepping out of comfort zones were other defining characteristics, in addition to giving one’s time to the youth of the community.
Myers also believed that changing something because of past experience or a lack of experiences was important. However, she also saw in the 10 individuals nominated in this year’s program that helping others made them feel good, and that they use their talents to help others.
From Myers’ perspective, it is also certainly better to be doing something.
“These tell why you do what you do,” she said. “The ‘why’ is also your purpose, your drive and why you go the extra mile.”
“All 10 of you are different than everyone else, and that is why you are being recognized tonight.”
Reflecting on the past year since she was chosen as the Difference Maker of the Year last September, Myers said she had considered what her purpose is. As such, she credits her faith as the driver of her passion for helping others.
“God has given me a passion to give to others,” she said. “I have a vision of stretching myself. People often ask me how I do all I do, and my answer always is ‘God gives me strength.’”
Myers also echoed what has become a common theme among the individuals who have been nominated as difference makers in Putnam County.
“I have never set out to be recognized for doing what I love to do.”
In addition to Sheila Holloway, the Difference Makers nominees included Deputy Marshal Levi App of the Cloverdale Police Department, Lisa Baker of Cloverdale, Jackie Eitel of Greencastle, J.D. Grove of Greencastle, DePauw University President Mark McCoy, Lynn Ramey of Greencastle, Jerry Rud of Greencastle, Martha Wharton of Greencastle and Darrell Wiatt of Russellville. Wharton was unable to attend the banquet, so her brother Mike Whaley accepted her award on her behalf.
The Banner Graphic’s general manager Daryl Taylor served as the night’s emcee, maintaining the flow of the ceremony while making some quips along the way. Marketing Manager Montica Patterson introduced each of the nominees while Taylor handed them their awards and prizes.
The night was also considered the “coming out” night for the Banner Graphic’s editor-in-chief Eric Bernsee, who has been away from the newspaper with health issues and was recently cleared to work part time. An enthusiastic applause went up when Taylor recognized him.
Sponsors for this year’s Difference Makers program included Cloverdale Drugs/Crossroads Pharmacy, the City of Greencastle, Crown Equipment Corporation, Hendricks Power Cooperative, Ivy Tech Community College, Myers’ Market, Prime Real Estate Group and the Putnam County Community Foundation.
Donors of prizes for both the winner and the finalists included the Almost Home Restaurant, the Banner Graphic, Greencastle Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chicago’s Pizza, Greencastle Casey’s, Conspire, Dairy Castle, Endeavor Communications, Jimmy John’s, JTN Outdoor Power Equipment, Krambo’s Kustom Kolors, Kroger, Lou’s Diner, Myers’ Market, Greencastle McDonald’s, Roachdale Hardware, Scoops Ice Cream Parlor, Starbucks, Walmart, Cloverdale Arby’s and Cloverdale McDonald’s.