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Nancy Reitsma named Citizen of the Year

Hannah Smith named Student of the Year

January 21, 2011
BRETTON WOODS–Friday night, Nancy Reitsma was named Littleton Citizen of the Year, joining such luminaries like previous recipients Jack Colby, Paul McGoldrick and Lucy Magoon.

The award, which recognizes outstanding contributions to community life, was given to Reitsma during the Littleton Area Chamber of Commerce's Annual Dinner in the ballroom of the Mount Washington Hotel, Friday night.

Brien Ward introduced Reitsma by describing her life without naming her, a traditional method of introducing the recipient, letting both the audience and the new Citizen of Year guess the identity of the person.

Ward said Reitsma had a "can do spirit" and is the type of person "every community wants to have." He said she had been married for 40 years and lived in Littleton for 36 of them. A parent of an Eagle Scout, she has been a Cub Scout and Boy Scout leader, and she brought technology to Lakeway Elementary and to the Lions Club, Ward said. She has been a regular volunteer at the Littleton Area Senior Center.

Five years ago, Ward said, Reitsma had been so sick she was on death's door. She had to relearn how to walk and reacquire her motor skills. Ward said she wasn't someone you would read about every day but had made deep and lasting contributions to Littleton.

Since the inception of Littleton High School's (LHS) Community Service Program, Reitsma has overseen it. Each student is required to serve 50 hours of community service before graduating and Reitsma has overseen the 1,000 students who have so far gone through the program.

"That's over 70,000 community service hours," Ward said.

An emotional Reitsma, who had just been before the 250 people in the ballroom to present the Student of the Year Award, said she was surprised to receive the award. She said when her family first arrived in Littleton she had no intention of staying. But stay she did and she loves it.

"It's amazing to hear the things you did. You forget all these things," Reitsma said.

Student of the Year

Earlier in the evening, Reitsma and Al Smith, the principal of LHS, gave the Student of the Year Award to senior Hannah Smith. Principal Smith said Hannah had been on the honor roll through her entire high school career and has served 189 community service hours, far exceeding the required 50. She is active in the drama club, holding an internship at Littleton Regional Hospital as well as holding a part-time job.

"I'm not sure how she manages it all," Smith said.

Martin Lord & Osman
Salmon Press
Alton School
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