MONROE, Conn. — Monroe booster Lee Hossler has been named Monroe’s 2017 Outstanding Citizen thanks to his accomplished leadership over the years to such community movements as the Chamber of Commerce, the Economic Development Commission and Save Our Stepney.
“Over many years, for any cause Lee has been asked to serve, he has responded without hesitation. He is truly the consummate Monroe community volunteer," Monroe First Selectman Steve Vavrek said of Hossler's service.
Hossler was chose for embodying the award's ideals of outstanding achievement, exceptional volunteerism, humanitarian service, lifetime distinction, acts of courage, philanthropic activities and raising the profile/image of Monroe.
Now retired from corporate life, Hossler's his volunteerism has extended over a broad arc of community activities for almost five decades.
As a member of the board of directors of the Chamber of Commerce, Hossler has been pivotal in recruiting new members and organizing grand openings for new businesses. His door-by-door survey provided an important evaluation of the business climate in town for the Economic Development Commission, where he was an active volunteer between 2007 and 2016 and the chairman for four years.
He is a charter member of the Save Our Stepney Task Force since 2001, still working now to beautify Stepney Green, mobilizing artists to exhibit their work on the green and gaining recognition for Civil War veterans interred in the Stepney Cemetery.
He is also an active member of the Monroe Historical Society, Connecticut Trust for Historic Barns and the Monroe Arts and Culture Council.
His interest in photography and antiquities led to an exhibition of his images of old barns and the U.S. Southwest at the Edith Wheeler Memorial Library in 2016. He is also an avid bicyclist.
Hossler coached AYSO soccer in the 1970s, served as a Boy Scout leader in the 1960s and later mentored Eagle Scouts. He was also a staff photographer for the Connecticut Tourist Bureau from 2005 to 2008, served as a member of the Civilian Air Patrol from 1956 to 1960 and served in the U.S. Army National Guard from 1957 to 1965.
Hossler and his wife, Dotti, have been married for 53 years and. Their son Michael and daughter-in-law Kim have two children, Madeline and Jakob.
Before retiring, Hossler worked in marketing for Raybestos-Manhattan in Manheim, Pa., and then at headquarters in Trumbull, later joining Rudkin-Wiley in Stratford and Trans-Lux in Norwalk.
Hossler will be officially recognized at the Town Council Meeting at Town Hall on May 8 at 8 p.m. The public is invited to attend A reception with light refreshments. A video profiling the highlights of his service is being prepared to premiere at the council meeting.The award — which is administered through the first selectman’s office — in previous years went to:
- Nancy Zorena in 2016,
- Deb Heim in 2015,
- Diane Mellen in 2014,
- Enid Lipeles in 2013,
- Karen Burnaska in 2012 and
- Bernie Sippin in 2011.
The organizations that help to pick the honoree on the selection committee and their representatives are:
- Monroe Historical Society, Karen Cardi, former president, Kevin Daly
- Monroe Senior Citizen Center, Cathy Belanger
- Edith Wheeler Memorial Library, Lorna Rhyins, adult services librarian
- Monroe Arts Council, Barbara Haeger, president
- WMNR Fine Arts Radio, Fred Velardi, Jane Stadler
- Monroe Police Department, Chief John Salvatore
- Monroe Farmers Market: Amy Primorac
- Monroe Chamber of Commerce, Ray Giovanni, president
- Monroe Lions Club, Frank Bent, president
- Member-at-large, Marven Moss