Many service organizations tend to honor their own at end of the year banquets.
But with a motto of "service above self," Dawson County Rotary chooses instead to pay tribute in December to individuals who serve the community as county and city government workers.
Rotary Club recognized the county's employees of the year Dec. 8 during the club's annual Christmas celebration.
Bob Bolz, training supervisor for the Dawson County Sheriff's Office, Fleet administrator Shannon Harben and firefighter Douglas Wofford received plaques and a monetary gift from the club.
Dawson County Manager Kevin Tanner, who is also a longtime Rotarian, described Bolz, Harben and Wofford as employees who continuously go above and beyond their official duties for the good of the county.
"We're so thankful that Rotary does this each year for our employees," he said.
Billy Thurmond, emergency services director, said there was no better recipient to be named the department's employee of the year.
"When I think of this gentleman, I think of commitment and pride in what he does, because he is dedicated," Thurmond said. "When you volunteer for 32 years protecting your community, you're dedicated to that cause."
Wofford said he is honored by the recognition.
"Some people have the calling to preach, but to me, this was my calling to help people," he said.
While Wofford was recognized for his long term commitment, Bolz was named employee of the year for the accomplishments he has achieved in the year he has been at the sheriff's office.
"He has taken our training division to the next level," said Sheriff Billy Carlisle. "He's a great asset to our department and a fine example of our officers."
David Headley, director of Public Works, said Harben, top employee in general government, was chosen in part for his contribution in saving the county nearly $320,000 through internalizing fleet maintenance in the last two years.
"It's quite an accomplishment," Headley said.
Employees with the city were also honored collectively. They chose to donate their gift to KARE for Kids, which supplies underprivileged children with presents at Christmas.