PHOTOS: Celebrate Takoma and Azalea Awards

PHOTOS • JAY KELLER

This year’s Azalea Awards were presented Saturday, May 14 at the annual Celebrate Takoma festival. Here are the individuals who were honored for going above and beyond to make a difference in our community

ARTS (tie)

Busy Graham combines superhuman energy with a commitment to bringing music and dance to Takoma Park and surrounding areas.

Yvonne Edwards, founder of Knock on Wood, has been teaching greater Takoma residents to shuffle and flap since 1994.

BUSINESS LEADER

Eric Hardy, the friendly manager of Old Town’s Ace Hardware, goes out of his way to accommodate his customers’ often quirky needs and support local organizations.

COACH

Brian Baker coaches soccer and cross country at Takoma Park Middle School in addition to running the popular Ski Club.

GREEN ACTIVIST

Lori Hill and John Robinette produce entertaining videos to educate people about environmental practices, which they also model in their everyday activities.

EDUCATOR

Holly Pasquale, TPMS instrumental music teacher and maestro extraordinaire, works wonders with our children at one of their most challenging stages, consistently earning “superior” ratings and wowing competition judges with her ensembles.

MENTOR

Abby Golden, Takoma Park Elementary’s beloved guidance counselor, makes every child in the school feel special while meeting their emotional—and, often, physical—needs.

NEIGHBORHOOD VOLUNTEER

Margaret Buraimoh has risen to the forefront of tenant rights and affordable housing reform in her own Hampshire Towers community and throughout Takoma Park.

SCHOOL ACTIVIST

As PTSA president at Montgomery Blair High School, Ray Moreno has worked to promote student achievement and community involvement.

TAKOMA SPIRIT

Tara Egan and Gene Herman became unlikely partners a year ago to rescue Takoma Park’s iconic July 4th parade.

TAK-TIVIST

Cindy Dyballa has served for many years on the City’s Environment and Recreation committees and was instrumental in preserving the woods behind the old McLaughlin school.