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Kathy Willenborg, left, receives a plaque recognizing her as New Vienna’s “Citizen of the Year” from Andrea Mausser, president of the New Vienna Business Boosters.

She’s the first one to say the town is full of people deserving the honor, but it was Kathy Willenborg who was named Citizen of the Year for New Vienna by the New Vienna Business Boosters.

Willenborg was honored Jan. 20 during the Boosters’ annual meeting. Andrea Mausser, president of the Boosters, said of Willenborg’s many contributions to the town, “Kathy was recognized for being a key contributor with her volunteer efforts for events tied with the New Vienna Historical Society, along with the Tractor Pullers Association.”

Mausser said Willenborg goes about all her tasks with a winning spirit. “She has a caring and compassionate attitude and it’s evident when you have a chance to speak with her. Kathy makes events a priority by making the phone calls to line people up, ensuring the supplies are available, and doing any running back and forth. It’s often the work behind the scenes that contributes to the success of an event and with Kathy’s involvement, time and time again events have been successful.”

Willenborg doesn’t regard what she does as anything different than many in the close-knit community. “I am very surprised to be named the Citizen of the Year. This is quite an honor — there are so many others that are just as worthy.”

Booster members can nominate candidates, and the group’s officers vote on the nominations and choose the winner.

Willenborg said some of the reasons given for choosing her were calling people to work at events, getting quilters to show up, buying groceries, being active with the Heritage House Museum, Tractor Pullers Association and Parish Council, and other area events.

She considers herself extremely fortunate to live where she does. “The best part about living in New Vienna is the people,” said Willenborg. “Everyone is so friendly and willing to help with any project that can use their talents — to keep New Vienna the ‘eNVy’ of Iowa.”