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Anita Bugg is hard to surprise. Her training as an Illinois certified paramedic/fire fighter means she is calm, cool and collected in a crisis. She’s been a medic for twelve years and a certified firefighter since 2000. Surprises are part of her everyday life.
In her other job as the editor of the Ballard Weekly, she’s up to her neck in community events all around Ballard County. That’s why hearing her name called as 2008 Ballard County Citizen of the Year was sweeter for the Ballard County Chamber of Commerce that chose her.
Thursday evening at Ballard County High School, the Ballard County Chamber of Commerce hosted over 200 participants for their annual Chamber Dinner. Anita was there as official photographer for the event. Little did she know that her role as observer would change to participant.

The Ballard Weekly has been honored for the past two years for its journalistic role in promoting Relay for Life. Anita was recently elected to the Red Cross Board of Directors and is a member of the Disaster Assistance Team with Red Cross. Her paper devotes lots of ink to events in Ballard County, like the fall Harvest Festival in Wickliffe and the Doo-Wop Days in LaCenter in the spring. Her help and skills writing grants and promoting new business in Ballard County went into the Chamber’s decision to award her their highest individual honor.
The Business of the Year Award went to WGCF/WBEL, 88.5 FM. The station, a Christian radio broadcaster and part of the American Family Radio network, broadcast from events all over the county. Their support of local activities also contributed to their selection.  Pictured left to right: Bill Hughes, Glen Dunkerson, Linda Goin, Barbara Jones (Chamber Director) and John Summers. The staff of WGCF/WBEL receiving their award.
The keynote speaker for the evening was Murray State President Randy Dunn. He told the audience that Murray State has embarked on a “12 By 12” program: enrolling 12,000 students by 2012. Presently MSU’s enrollment stands at around 10,000. Recruiting new students will have an impact on Ballard County students as Murray State reaches out to them to reach their enrollment goal.
Ballard County’s Chamber is unique in its draw of members from the small towns that dot the county. Members are recruited from the cities of Wickliffe, Barlow, Kevil, LaCenter and surrounding areas.
Anita said that the towns work together to promote events. “For example, LaCenter will publicize Harvest Festival in Wickliffe. When Doo Wop Days are held in LaCenter, Wickliffe will promote it and encourage folks to have fun in LaCenter.”
She’s humble about the recognition. When asked for a quote for this story, she said,
“It is truly an honor to be recognized by the Chamber as Citizen of the Year.  It is a team effort with wonderful people of Ballard County working together to make things happen.  We care about this county and the people in it and it is our goal and effort to make it a better place to live for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren.  When all else fails, we have each other and that is what makes it so great to be a part of this community.
When asked why she works so hard for Ballard County, Anita said her children grew up in Ballard County. Her son still lives here and “I don’t want to see him have to leave because there are no jobs.”
That won’t happen as long as 2008 Citizen of the Year Anita Bugg and the Ballard County Chamber of Commerce have anything to say about it.
At left, MSU President Dr. Randy Dunn and Barbara Jones, Exec. Director, Ballard County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Center

At left, the staff from Kentucky Workforce Development

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