GRIFFITH | Lou Martinez, Retired Lake Area United Way President was presented The Sagamore of the Wabash Award after the organization’s June meeting of its Board of Directors.
Martinez’ career with Lake Area United Way spans over 3 decades. His first role within the organization was as Associate Director of Allocations under the direction of Lyndon Milliken, the organization’s first Executive Director. In 1991 Martinez was promoted to Vice President of Fund Raising. In May of 1995 he was named President, succeeding Robert C. MacConnell. Throughout his career, he oversaw in excess of $100 million generated and distributed to Lake County non-profits, which created a better quality of life for all.
Throughout his career, Lou has served in positions with the Governor’s Commission for a Drug Free Indiana, the Indiana Department of Family Services, Social Services Advisory Committee, the Lieutenant Governor’s Economic Development Task Force, the State of Indiana’s Gambling Impact Study Commission, and the Governor’s Commission on Home and Community-based Services and the Lake County Welfare to Work Coalition. He also served on the board of the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority and as State Trustee to Ivy Tech Community College. He currently serves on the board of One Region and is Vice President of the Board of The Carmelite Home in East Chicago.
Aaron McDermott, LAUW Board President, presented the award and shared, “I consider it an honor to have served on the Board during the last 5 years of Lou’s tenure. When we began planning his transition, we also agreed he would be a logical candidate for the Sagamore Award.” He added, “I am proud I was able to present it to him as our Board President.”
Addressing the Board after the award presentation, Martinez commented, “I have no words to express my surprise and gratitude.” He added, “It’s been an honor to have served Northwest Indiana and to witness The Region’s upward progress for the past thirty-five years.”
Senator Ed Charbonneau presented this year’s nominations to Governor Pence. The award is the highest honor that the Governor of Indiana can bestow. It is a personal tribute usually given to those who have rendered a distinguished service to the state or to the governor. Among these who have received Sagamores have been astronauts, presidents, ambassadors, artists, musicians, politicians, and other citizens who have contributed greatly to our Hoosier heritage.
Photo Caption: Aaron McDermott, LAUW Board President, presents Lou Martinez, recently retired LAUW President, The State of Indiana's Sagamore of The Wabash Award
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