Each year, the Royal Rosarians honor some of the members of our community who have performed exceptional acts of heroism and/or outstanding humanitarian work without regard for personal safety, public recognition, or personal gain.
Members of Portland area media newsrooms select Newsmaker honorees. The 2016 Newsmakers of the Year were honored at a banquet in March.
The Skanner presented an award to Sharon Gray Smith. Smith directed the McKenzie River Gathering Foundation as part of her two-decade career in advocating locally and nationally for racial and economic justice. MRG is a major funder of social justice organizations in Oregon, including Portland Jobs with Justice, and the African Women's Coalition. Jerry Foster, Advertising Manager for The Skanner presented Gray with a Royal Rosarian bronze medallion and a framed certificate by the Prime Minister.
K103-FM morning radio personalities John Erickson and Bruce Murdock served as the Master of Ceremonies for the evening as media representatives presented their Newsmaker and his/her newsworthy story to a banquet audience of approximately 400 guests.
View photos of recipients of 2016 Newsmakers of the Year and read why they were chosen:
Sharon Gray Smith receives her Newsmakers medal from the Rosarians. Photographer Brent Barnett
Sharon Gray Smith directed the McKenzie River Gathering Foundation as part of her two-decade career in advocating locally and nationally for racial and economic justice. MRG is a major funder of social justice organizations in Oregon, including Portland Jobs with Justice, and the African Women's Coalition. Presented by Jerry Foster, Advertising Manager, The Skanner News. Photographer Brent Barnett
Inspired by his own struggles in life, 9-year-old Austin McCrae offers weekly help to the homeless in Portland. Austin has cystic fibrosis and diabetes, and shows his appreciation for people who have been helping him throughout his life by reaching out to others. Presented by Cathy Marshall, KGW TV Channel 8. Photographer Brent Barnett
Dave Bourne, Program Director KUIK Radio AM 1360 introduces Sergeant Eric Bunday. Photographer Brent Barnett
Sergeant Eric Bunday responded to the line--of-duty death of his friend and mentor, Rainer Police Chief Ralph Painter, by helping to organize the Oregon Fallen Badge Foudation. Photographer Brent Barnett
Sally Davis is accepting for her father Sean Davis. Davis earned Portland's Emerging Leader human Rights Award after opening American Legion Post #134 to shelter dozens of homelss during Portland's recent snow storms, and also helping veterans overcome difficulties in transitioning back into civilian life. Photographer Brent Barnett
Gerardo Ochoa, as Assistant Dean for Diversity and Community Partnerships at Linfield College, leads efforts to diversify faculty and staff and uphold a culture of inclusiveness and belonging. Presented by Enrique Caicero, Sports Anchor, KUNP TV Channel 47. Photographer Brent Barnett
Portland Fire Bureau Lieutenant Peter St. John saved many lives at great risk to his own when he rushed toward the danger of a NW Portland gas leak and pulled several alarms. A resultant explosion blew him across the street and broke both of his legs. Presented by Pete Ferryman, KPTV TV Channel 12. Photographer Brent Barnett
Oregon State Police Officer, Nick Cederberg, was shot 12 times at close range on Christmas day while engaging a murder suspect. Presented by Nikki DeBuse, Hillsboro Tribune and Forest Grove News-Times. Photographer Brent Barnett
Sally Fabre helped a homeless man who frequently walked by her office after inviting him in for a visit. She helped him fulfill a dying wish by locating his lost daughter and arranging for them to spend time in Boise before his passing away. Presented by Eileen Park, KOIN TV Channel 6. Photographer Brent Barnett
The Newsmakers of the Year for 2016. Photographer Brent Barnett