Discover Burien gives out awards to locals who are ‘Making Burien Awesome’

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[EDITOR’S NOTE: BTB Founder/Publisher Scott Schaefer is on the Board of Discover Burien, a local business non-profit whose mission is ‘Making Burien Awesome!’]

Story & Photos by Scott Schaefer

Discover Burien held its annual Awards Dinner fundraiser at the Community Center on Friday night, March 28, where residents mingled with local businesspeople and honored the “Best of Burien” – those who are ‘Making Burien Awesome.’

Hosted by Executive Director Andrea Reay, along with the organization’s President John White, the evening was filled with great food, drinks and desserts from local restaurants, a silent auction and of course, lots of awards.

In addition to many local businesspeople, Burien City Councilmembers on hand (that we saw) included Bob Edgar, Debi Wagner, Nancy Tosta and Jerry Robison. Ex-councilmember Rose Clark was also on hand, as was soon-to-be new City Manager Kamuron Gurol.

Here’s the list of winners:

  • Educator of the year: Nancy Sparks, teacher at Gregory Heights Elementary School
  • Best Burien Restaurant: Black Zia Cantina
  • Best Burien Beverage: Margarita at Black Zia Cantina
  • Exemplary Service Award: Nancy Sparks
  • Charity of the Year: Transform Burien
  • Public Servant of the Year: Gina Kallman, Cultural Arts Supervisor, City of Burien
  • Audacious Innovator: B-Town BEAT music and art walk
  • Burien Hero: Maureen Hoffmann, WABI Burien board president
  • Jeff Kearney Award: Tanner Pempeit
  • Business Leader of the Year: Lynda Isernio, Sterling Savings Bank

And here are some photos from the event – click images to see larger versions/slideshow:


The B-Town Blog’s centerpiece included an iPad with a live local news feed from the website.


Decapitated heads or mannequins with wigs? Serenza Spa & Salon’s centerpiece stood out.


WABI Burien’s centerpiece rotated and was a popular attraction.


Guests bid on numerous Silent Auction items donated by local businesses.


The Dessert Dash was a frenzied hit where guests ran to retrieve their treats.


In the foreground is new Burien City Manager Kamuron Gurol, who starts his new job April 16.


Discover Burien President John White welcomed the crowd along with Executive Director Andrea Reay.


Reay sang part of the song “Wind Beneath my Wings” to Maureen Hoffmann.


Hoffmann was honored as “Burien Hero.”


Gina Kallman was honored as “Public Servant of the Year.”


Lynda Isernio was honored as “Business Leader of the Year.”


Maggie Larrick of the Burien Actors Theatre was honored with the “Robbie Award.”


Black Zia Cantina owners Xylona and Cloud Duran took home awards for “Best Restaurant” and “Best Beverage.”


Tanner Pempeit was honored with the “Jeff Kearney Award.”


Teacher Nancy Sparks was honored with “Educator of the Year” and “Exemplary Service Award.”


The gang from the B-Town Beat was honored as “Audacious Innovator.”


The “Charity of the Year” was awarded to Transform Burien.


“Student Leader of the Year” was awarded to Sean Rita of Highline High School.

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