SHAR HASKINS (center, with the balloons) was named the SRCC Community Champion at a surprise gathering at Abiding in the Vine in downtown Owosso on Friday, Jan. 12. Gathered are (from left) Owosso Main Street/DDA program assistant Tracey Peltier, Owosso Main Street/DDA executive director Josh Adams, Abiding in the Vine owner Corky Adams, committee member John Hankerd, SRCC member services director Sue Osika, Jeff Adams, committee member Kim Lazar, Chemical Bank Community President Craig Bishop, committee member Mark Hudson, and committee chairman Paul Constine.
A Community Champion is an example for the rest of the community to follow. Sponsored by Chemical Bank, this award emphasizes that community service is important and that the recipient passionately demonstrates the true meaning of community service. The recipient may be a public official, a community leader, a concerned citizen, a health or human services worker or a volunteer. The recipient can be a chamber member or non-member. The Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce selected Shar Haskins of Owosso as the 2018 Community Champion award recipient. Haskins is the former owner/operator of Jumbo’s Burger Bar.
Haskins was chosen for her behind-the-scenes work in the community. The nominator stated, “Shar is deeply committed to the community and has proven that in many ways. She has been a volunteer for Glow Owosso – taking care of the Santa suit, getting it cleaned and pressed, she passes out posters and helps fill the downtown flower baskets with holiday greens. Shar has been a volunteer with the Steam Railroading Institute – cleaning the train after excursions, decorating the grounds and setting up new displays in the museum. She not only shares her knowledge and connections, but is always the first to step up and volunteer. Shar is very quiet about the good she does in the community and has said that she likes it that way – she’s not doing it for recognition – it’s just the right thing to do.”
Josh Adams of Owosso Main Street stated, “Shar was instrumental in the purchase of the Christmas tree that stands in Main Street Plaza. She stepped forward with a large donation of $12,000, contributed in honor of her late father, Joe Merkel. Shar is definitely following her father’s example through community involvement and humanitarianism.” Haskins has also given numerous volunteer hours to the Owosso Farmers Market, helping with The Moonlight Market, as well as The Block Party fundraisers. She frequently volunteers with many events of Owosso Main Street.
One of the most compelling stories about Haskins came from Corky Adams of Abiding In The Vine. Adams said, “In 2016, I was diagnosed with cancer, and I had chemo seven days a week for four months. During that time, Shar managed my tearoom everyday. She cooked, cleaned, managed staff and purchased inventory. She told me not to worry about anything but getting better. I did get better, and because of Shar, I had a business to come back to. She will forever be my champion!”
The Community Champion Award will be formally presented, along with the ATHENA Award, Mission Award, Chairman’s Award, Ambassador Rising Star Award and the Outstanding Business Awards at the Shiawassee Regional Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner on Thursday, Jan. 25 at D’Mar Banquet & Conference Center in Owosso.
(Independent Photo/Karen Mead-Elford)

SRCC Community Champion Surprised was last modified: January 26th, 2018 by Karen Elford