The Niles Rotary Club named its first Citizen of the Year last week when Frank Burke, a lifetime Niles resident, was honored by the club.
"Coming here I thought I would be among strangers, but I can go to every table and know three or four people at each one,'' Burke said at the Rotary's regular meeting held at Ciminero's Banquet Centre.
An active member of the community, Burke is a 1940 graduate of Niles McKinley High School and is a member of its Alumni Hall of Fame. He graduated in 1947 from Youngstown College, now Youngstown State University, and is a member of the YSU Alumni Association as well.
Niles Rotary Club honored its first Citizen of the Year Award to lifetime Niles resident Frank Burke. Pictured, from left, are Jerry O’Brad, secretary; Steven Siminich; the Rev. Tom Kraszewski of St. Stephen Church; Frank Burke; and Jim Yuhasz.
Burke served his county during World War II as a battery clerk in the U.S. Army. Following his service, he worked at Youngstown Sheet and Tube and retired from Metropolitan Life in 1982.
He is a life member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles, VFW chaplain, Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus and former Grand Knight and received the Ohio State Council Award for outstanding work in the community.
He also has been president of the St. Vincent DePaul Society, works at the St. Vincent DePaul Store in Warren and delivers baked goods to the St. Vincent dining hall.
Burke was recommended for the award by the Rev. Tom Kraszewski of St. Stephen Church, where he is a member and organizer of St. Stephen's hosting of Niles' Community Meals each April and October.
Burke also is active in Boy Scouts of America, where he has served as a volunteer for 42 years and received the St. George and Silver Beaver Awards. He is an active member of the Sierra Club, the Niles Senior Citizens and the Niles Historical Society.
The Niles Rotary Club began gathering nominations for its first Citizen of the Year Award in February.
Burke was presented with a plaque during the regular meeting of the Niles Rotary Club.
"This ranks in the top three of all the awards I've ever received,'' Burke said.
The Niles Rotary Club meets at noon each Thursday at Ciminero's Banquet Centre.