Fallbrook Chamber presents annual awards

The Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce presented awards to several deserving citizens and businesses at the 63rd Annual Recognition Banquet at Camp Pendleton’s San Luis Rey Officer’s Club on Saturday, January 19. The chairperson of the dinner was Dona Clark.

Citizen of the Year

Eileen and Phil Delaney are a husband and wife team who share the Citizen of the Year award. The Citizen of the Year is the highest recognition of the Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce. The efforts and accomplishments expected of a Citizen of the Year should reflect work accomplished over several years.

The Delaneys’ work has been spread out over a wide range of nonprofit organizations. Eileen was honored to be chosen as a 2002 Olympic Torch Bearer from San Diego to Oceanside.

Since 2001, Eileen has served as an elected member of the Fallbrook Community Planning Group. She chairs the Fallbrook Design Review Board Committee and is a member of two other committees: Circulation and Parks and Recreation.

Recently the San Diego County Board of Supervisors selected Eileen to fill a vacant seat on the I-15 Corridor Design Review Board. She has served on the board for the Boys & Girls Club, Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce, Fallbrook Village Association and the Fallbrook Art and Cultural Center.

Eileen’s achievements further include: serving for five years on the Fallbrook Fantasy Wedding committee, being named the California State Senate Woman of the Year 2003, founding Operation United Families in 1999 (to benefit members of military and their families), and being a two-term Fallbrook Honorary Mayor.

She was selected by San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis to attend the first District Attorney and Sheriff’s Department Citizen’s Academy and is a director of the Fallbrook Healthcare Foundation.

Eileen is also a CERT volunteer, was a Firestorm 2007 Fallbrook Area Service Team volunteer and public information officer and provided valuable assistance with the “After the Ashes” event. She also worked with the Legacy Endowment Victims Fund as caseworker.

Phil Delaney is the first person to have served twice as president of the Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce in nonconsecutive terms, 2001 and 2007.

In 2002, Phil was the chairman of Fallbrook Children First.

He was a Firestorm 2007 Fallbrook Area Service Team volunteer leader. Phil helped establish the Fallbrook Fire Victims Fund after the October 2007 firestorm with Legacy Endowment: A Community Foundation of Fallbrook.

In November, Phil’s work with a diverse group of community organizations enabled the “Fallbrook: After the Ashes” event to go forward. Legacy has now made disbursements to victims approaching $100,000.

Julie Reeder, publisher of the Village News, had this to say about the couple: “I think the Delaneys are a great choice. They tirelessly serve, and unless you are very involved in several organizations, there is no way you can see the number of nonprofit hours they put into the community.

“After the fires I really appreciated all the time and effort Phil and Eileen contributed to the fundraising and distribution effort. They were absolutely invaluable.”

Lifetime Achievement Award

Carol Eastman is the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. (This award is not an annual accolade.) Nominees have reached out across many areas of the community to accomplish goals for the betterment of Fallbrook for more than fifteen years.

Eastman has served the Fallbrook community in various capacities for more than twenty-two years and has attended at least 3,056 committee meetings. She is called the ‘Mother of the Avocado Festival,’ having proposed and implemented the event more than 22 years ago.

Eastman served as an elected director and treasurer of the Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce and is an active member of the Fallbrook Soroptimist Club. She implemented improvements to the Fallbrook Christmas Parade and also began the Nail & Sail contest at Oceanside Harbor Days.

“I am extremely honored to be given this award

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