The return of the Farmington Area Jaycees Citizen of the Year award in November presented the club with a dilemma.
Two nominees received the same number of votes during the online polling period. Rather than trying to choose, president Andrew Buck said, the club decided to honor both Reena Naami-Dier, owner and director of the Spark Center for Autism, and Todd Lipa, director of C.A.R.E.S. in Farmington Hills.
During the presentation made during the December7 Jaycees Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Governor Warner Mansion in Farmington, Buck said Naami-Dier has a passion for working with people. The main focus of her career is working with children who have autism and other developmental disabilities.
While she has traveled the country, Naami-Dier said that “coming back to Farmington Hills was always my plan, and I am so happy to be here and to help citizens of this community.”
Learn more about the Spark Center for Autism at sparkcenterforautism.com.
Lipa is director of Youth and Family Services for the City of Farmington Hills and runs the city’s after-school program, which has served thousands of middle school children.
As director of C.A.R.E.S., he oversees a food pantry, clothing bank, and on-site services that help more than 730 families in need at a campus on Shiawassee Road in Farmington Hills.
“I couldn’t be more proud of what C.A.R.E.S. is doing, what the cities of Farmington Hills and Farmington have done, and Farmington Public Schools, for 25 years of caring for kids,” he said.
Learn more about C.A.R.E.S. at caresfh.org.
The Jaycees also honored Greenpath Financial Services as Business of the Year. Based for 20 years in Farmington Hills, the national nonprofit helps clients with issues that range from debt management and foreclosure support, to providing financial management tools. Learn more at greenpath.com.