By Freda Miklin – Governmental Reporter
On April 28, the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG) officially presented Greenwood Village Mayor Emeritus Ron Rakowsky with the John V. Christensen Memorial Award in a virtual event. According to DRCOG, it is “considered one of the region’s highest honors” and “recognizes advocates of collaboration and cooperation.”
Due to the health pandemic,
the award was presented to Mayor Rakowsky in person at Greenwood Village City Hall on April 8 in a socially distanced very small ceremony with only members of the DRCOG executive board included. The Villager was also there by invitation.
In presenting the award to Mayor Rakowsky, Mayor Ashley Stolzmann of Louisville, board chair of DRCOG, said that the John V. Christenson Award was given to someone who has demonstrated “a commitment to regionalism,” and “accomplished a great deal to make life better for people.” She noted that this award was originally planned to be presented in April 2020 at Mile High Stadium because, “we all knew that if we were going to celebrate Mayor Rakowsky, we would need an entire stadium because…there’s almost not a person in the DRCOG region that doesn’t know this man and hasn’t been touched in a positive way by Ron’s tireless efforts over time.” She continued, looking directly at the honoree, “Ron is really very special to all of us. We couldn’t pass on this opportunity to present the award in person and not just mail it to you. It’s too important to all of us to be able to recognize all the work of Mayor Rakowsky.” Turning back to the small group, Stolzmann went on, “Ron has always been passionate and active in civic affairs…At DRCOG, we often talk about donning our regional caps when we meet at the board table…We have found that by working together on tough regional issues, we are able to accomplish a great deal and make life better for everyone who calls this place home. This award honors someone who truly embodies that collaborative approach, a true champion of regionalism, and very deserving of DRCOG’s highest honor.”