Finalists have been named in six categories for the annual Durango Rocks event to be held Jan. 17 at the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College, and they include Ashleigh Tarkington, owner of the Billy Goat Saloon in Gem Village.
The event, presented by the Durango Chamber of Commerce, honors community service, philanthropy and business development in Southwest Colorado and culminates with the naming of Citizen of the Year.
Tarkington is nominated for the chamber's Volunteer of the Year award, named in honor of Bill Mashaw.
"It was a complete surprise," she said of her nomination. "I'm honored to be nominated."
Tarkington is a trustee for the Bayfield Town Board. She also serves on the board of the Bayfield Chamber of Commerce and the Pine River Library, as well as volunteering for several other groups. She also is on the board of directors for Region 9 Economic Development. The Billy Goat hosts nwumerous fundraisers for local residents and groups.
Also nominated for the award volunteer award are Jeff Givens and Zeb Smith.
Besides the six categories in which nominees were named, several other awards will be presented, including the Morley Ballantine Award, named after longtime chairman of the board and editor of The Durango Herald, Leadership La Plata Barbara Conrad Award, Young Professional of the Year Award and Diplomat of the Year Award.
Here are the three finalists named earlier this month in six Durango Rocks categories:
Business of the Year: Durango Dermatology, Glacier Club and Ore House Restaurant.
Small Business of the Year: April's Garden, Durango Outdoor Exchange and Pet Haus.
Nonprofit of the Year: Community Foundation Serving Southwest Colorado, Four Corners Rainbow Youth Center and Southwestern Colorado Area Health Education Center.
Spirit of Durango Award: Manna Soup Kitchen, Payroll Department and Star Liquor.
Ed Morlan Entrepreneur of the Year: Christina Rinderle and Chris Bettin (Durango Land and Home), Jessika Buell (Marketing Concepts Squared) and Julie Dunn Brown and Paige Denier (ReLove Consign and Design).
Linda Mannix, co-founder of Snowdown and the Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering, was named Citizen of the Year in 2018.
The event will include a multimedia presentation featuring all the finalists.
Tickets are also available at the Community Concert Hall Box Office at the Welcome Center, 802 Main Ave.; by calling 247-7657; or online at www.durangoconcerts.com.
A pre-awards reception will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. with hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar. The awards begin at 6:30 p.m.