Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) today honored nine individuals and businesses for receiving the Innovation and Adaptation Recognition. The award was created to acknowledge the contribution of individuals, organizations, and those who are working every day to improve and help their communities in the current environment.
The winners will be recognized by Smith before the U.S. House of Representatives.
“I’m proud to honor the recipients of the Innovation and Adaptation Recognition. Nebraskans know our communities grow when individuals step up: helping their neighbors, being involved, and creating opportunity,” Smith said. “To all Nebraskans who work tirelessly to create thriving communities, I will continue to support your efforts and pursue policies to get the federal government out of the way and empower your success.”
Billy Estes is the Executive Director of the Midwest Theater of Scottsbluff. Midwest Theater’s programming, which includes live performances, orchestras, and concerts, makes an important contribution to the cultural and social experiences of Nebraska’s panhandle. When the Coronavirus pandemic reached western Nebraska, under the guidance of Mr. Estes, the Midwest Theater partnered with the Legacy of the Plains Museum to create the Skyview Drive-in Movie Theater. As the pandemic progressed, this venture proved so popular they outgrew their location and had to move to larger accommodations. Thanks to the creativity and leadership of Mr. Estes, in spite of the pandemic, the Midwest Theater has continued to thrive throughout 2020.
Grand Central Foods of York is owned by the Warren Thomas family.
Alyssa Cochnar of Crete is leader of Gold Star Martial Arts of Crete and Seward.
- Bryce Jensen is the Director of the World Theatre of Kearney.
Kirk Zeller grew up in the community of Ravenna, Nebraska.
Dick Cochran of Kearney founded the nonprofit Hot Meals USA in October 2017.
John McCoy is the CEO of Orthman Manufacturing of Lexington.
Anthony May of Hastings is an entrepreneur.
- Matt Dennis and Michael Stepp are more than small town business owners; they are master story tellers with a dream.