Each year, The Chadds Ford Township Residents Association honors a resident who has demonstrated exceptional citizenship with the Outstanding Citizen of the Year Award.
The Citizen of the Year is a person residing in Chadds Ford Township, Delaware County, who has made a significant volunteer contribution to the Township throughout the years. The Award recognizes the outstanding character and exceptional deeds with which they’ve made our community a better place to live.
Kathleen Goodier – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2022
Kathleen Goodier and her husband Matt are long-term residents of Chadds Ford where they have raised their two children. Kathleen has spent countless hours serving the township in many roles. She has supported the schools that her children attended as well as the township itself. She was a former member of the Chadds Ford Township Civic Association and currently spends many hours each month as an active board member of the Open Space Committee and the Planning Commission, in addition to the hours she devotes to writing the township’s newsletter. Her input and decisions on these boards have always been in support of what is best for the township to maintain its character and to build community.
Mary Kot – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2021
Mary Kot has been a pillar of our community since she moved to Chadds Ford Township over 20 years ago. She has volunteered endless hours on various committees within our township. Mary has a heart of gold and she leaves a bit of treasure in everyone’s life she encounters. With that treasure she leaves, it encourages us all to be better in our service to our town. Many of our towns’ volunteers have taken positions on committees per Mary’s example. A few of the various committees Mary served and continues to serve on are President, Vice President and Secretary of the Chadds Ford Civic Association, Chair of the Township’s Financial Advisory Board, and Chair of the Township’s Finance Committee. She participated in the Township’s Comprehensive Plan Visioning Workshops. She served for many years as Committeewoman for Northeast Precinct for The Chadds Ford Republican Party. She has been a long time (and is current) Chair and Municipal Leader of the Chadds Ford Republican Party. Mary served as President of the Unionville High School PTO, and has served in various roles on different committees for the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District, including as a committee member for the popular After Prom event. Mary has been and continues to be an integral part of Chadds Ford from school involvement to township decorating and everything in between.
Ted Varney – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2020
The Chadds Ford Residents’ Association has chosen Ted Varney 2020 Citizen of the Year. Ted has been humbly, quietly and generously offering his time, talent and expertise for our community for decades, in innumerable ways. At Rachel Kohl library Ted is the “go-to guy” when anything needs to be done. Ted regularly helps the library with everything from handyman projects, to cleaning up the library garden beds, to moving trees and plants.
Ted has been a critical volunteer for the Boy Scouts since the mid-1980s. Ted has helped to mold 100s of citizens through his various positions with the Scouts, which have included Scoutmaster for Troop 260, Concordville, and Secretary and Membership Chairman. Ted also has worked with Pack 916 and Troop 916 of St. Cornelius Parish in Chadds Ford. Ted has been an Eagle Scout Project Advisor, providing expert technical advice and support for over five dozen Eagle Scouts. Ted is a believer in “learning in the outdoors.” For the past 30 years he has helped organize and execute a remote camping experience at Haliburton Scout Reserve, Ontario, Canada.
Not only does Ted always offer his time and talent to the community, but he does it all with grace. He a quiet force in our community who often goes unnoticed. His relationship with the community is one of humble service and commitment.
Timotha Trigg – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2019
At the annual meeting of the Chadds Ford Township Civic Association in October, 2019, Timotha Trigg was honored as the 2019 Outstanding Chadds Ford Citizen of the Year.
A resident of the township for more than 25 years with her husband John, Timotha is the Chadds Ford Planning Commissioner and elected Township Auditor, and served eight years (2003 to 2011) as a Unionville Chadds Ford School Director, two years as president of the School Board, and two years as vice president.
In addition to being considered one of the foremost education experts in the state and devoting much of her time to the school district, she also serves on the Chadds Ford Historical and Architectural Review Board.
Debbie Reardon – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2018
Debbie Reardon has been chosen as the 2018 Chadds Ford Civic Association Outstanding Citizen of the Year. For almost 20 years Debbie has volunteered her time as the Chair of the Chadds Ford Township Open Space Committee and also served on the Battlefield Task Force Historic Resource Subcommittee representing Chadds Ford, Delaware County. Under Debbie’s leadership she and her hardworking committee have accomplished many goals including the following:
– Defined the committee’s purpose, goals, and objectives, and produced the first Township Open Space Plan.
– Improved the relationships with neighboring townships and the Brandywine Conservancy and worked with them on behalf of Chadds Ford Township.
– Spearheaded a successful Township ballot referendum to authorize collection of an annual Open Space Tax. Collected funds to be used to purchase and preserve land in Chadd Ford Township.
– Obtained in 2005 the first grant for $5,000 from a county program called Growing Greener.
– Worked with the Township to create the first Fee-In-Lieu ordinance to accrue funds for recreation.
– Wrote and received a grant from PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to create the Harvey Run Trail.
– Created a plan for Walkable Chadds Ford (connecting the Township with walking trails to historical and cultural sites).
– Wrote and received a grant from PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) for the Open Space Plan update which will incorporate a Trails and Recreation Plan.
– Opened Harvey Run Trail in 2017 connecting the Township to the Conservancy and the trail system. This is the first municipally funded recreational project in Chadds Ford Township. It required years of applications to put a bridge across the environmentally sensitive Harvey Run Creek.
– Received $1,000,000 grant from Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) in 2018 for the design and construction of Walkable Chadds Ford (to take the trail across Rt. 1 to the Chadds Ford Barn Shoppes).
Debbie is a native of Wilmington, DE with a degree from the University of Delaware in Theater Arts, English & Communications. She performed in the theater for 17 years and worked as an educator. For the last two years Debbie has been fighting a valiant personal battle with bone cancer. Wheelchair bound and receiving regular chemotherapy she has continued to attend and chair the Open Space Committee with the unwavering support of her husband Bob of 36 years and her children Brad and Alex.
Philip Wenrich – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2017
Philip Wenrich, a 23 year resident and current PA State Constable, is our 2017 Outstanding Chadds Ford Citizen of the Year. In Chadds Ford Township, Phil has served as Fire Marshal, Emergency Management Coordinator, Road Master, Webmaster, Committeeman and Civic Association President, Vice-President, Webmaster and Newsletter Editor just to name a few. Phil was a long time member of the Board of Directors for the local Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Cystic Fibrosis is a disease that affects him personally every day. Phil is currently awaiting lung transplant and his current situation is life-threatening, struggling to breathe daily but every day he gives to others, never saying no when asked to help out.
Phil regularly donates financially and with his time to help and counsel Cystic Fibrosis patients and their families. Phil is a former Police Motorcycle Officer and served as the head of the Fraternal Order of Police. He is currently the President of the local Centurions Police Organized Motorcycle Club. The Centurions have raised over $300,000 for the Shriner’s Hospital for Children. Phil hosts dozens of online support groups not just for our township residents but also for law enforcement and people suffering from Cystic Fibrosis giving them help, support, comfort and the resources to get the care and support they need. Aside from his career in law enforcement he owned a national home healthcare company specializing in home infusion therapy. Phil is a baker and owner of a local restaurant, and he has received countless awards for lifetime achievements and benevolence, he has given most of his life selflessly helping others and his community. Phil was honored at the Chadds Ford Civic Association Annual Meeting on October 24.
Robert Craig – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2016
The Chadds Ford Civic Association congratulates long-time resident Dr. Robert Craig for his stewardship and preservation of one of the most beautiful and historic farms in the township. Dr. Craig will be honored in October as the association’s Outstanding Citizen of the Year at the Brandywine River Museum during an evening event. “We salute Robert for helping to preserve the rural nature of our township, which is one of the stated goals of the Chadds Ford Civic Association,” said Mary Kot, Secretary of the association. “The farm has been very important to me and my family for a long time,” Dr. Craig said. “My father Walter Craig bought the farm in 1926. It was 95.5 acres. He later bought 12 contiguous acres on the west side. With one minor exception, the farm perimeter is essentially the same as it was in the late 1600s.” The Craig family’s working farm on Harvey Road is among the larger tracts of undeveloped land in the township. There are no plans to change the status of the farm’s ownership, use, or buildings, Robert Craig said. Its ownership eventually will pass to his son, Dr. Robert Craig II, Ph.D.
Dr. Craig, who spent his teenage years on the farm, said that “since earliest days it has been a dairy farm, with the milk going to Philadelphia.” In the 1950s, “my brother Walter, Jr. and I started a dairy, too.” Today, the farm is devoted to growing corn, wheat and soybeans. Dr. Craig enjoys studying the farm’s history, explaining that the land dates to a William Penn grant. As documents show, Penn in 1683 sold William Lamboll, an English Quaker, a deed for 625 acres in the Brandywine Valley. Lamboll initially deeded 100 acres in Chadds Ford Township to his niece, Alice Glover, and her husband, John Brunsden, who both came to America in 1684 and homesteaded on the land. A few years later, the land was sold to a familiar local name — Samuel Painter, Sr., who is believed to have immigrated to Philadelphia from England with his son, Samuel, in 1699. The younger Painter is credited with building the two-story home on Harvey Road with its distinctive Flemish bond brickwork. The larger section dates to about 1723, and the smaller section to 1738, according to a state historical study. Craigs, too, were among the area’s early settlers. “Our family ancestor, John Craig, came to the Chadds Ford area from Scotland in 1687,” Dr. Craig said. “The story in our family was that our ancestors lost their land in Scotland and came to America looking for farmland. Over time, Craig family members owned various farms in the area. Craigs continue to own land because, as my father often said, they value land over dollars,” he said.
The farm was involved in the final stage of the Battle of the Brandywine as the Continental Army retreated, engaging the British along the way. Dr. Craig said in reflection: “Many people, some here, died in agony for freedom.” Every year major improvements are undertaken to stabilize the house and barn, including roof maintenance, foundation reinforcement, pointing on stone walls, and, most recently, a new porch for the house, a replica of its Victorian-era renovation. Dr. Craig currently manages farm operations. Previously, he served Chester and Delaware Counties as a veterinarian for 30 years, working at New Bolton Center and running his own large animal practice. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine and earned an undergraduate degree from University of Delaware.
The author is Cathy Taylor, a Chadds Ford resident, former Washington Bureau Chief for a Southern California newspaper and a friend of Robert Craig.
Keith Klaver – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2015
The Chadds Ford Civic Association has chosen Keith Klaver as the 2015 Outstanding Citizen of the Year. Keith served as Chadds Ford Township Supervisor from 2012 – 2015 and as Chairman of the Board of Supervisors in 2014. During his tenure as a Township Supervisor he was the liaison to the Township Open Space Committee, Finance Committee and Sewer Authority. Prior to his election to Township Supervisor, Keith served as Treasurer on the Board of the Chadds Ford Civic Association and as Chadds Ford Township Sewer Authority Chairman. Keith is committed to serving the citizens of Chadds Ford and epitomized what we all look for in a public servant. He devoted countless volunteer hours to his job. Keith is often described as a “true gentleman”. Keith resigned from the Board of Supervisors in January 2015 due to health reasons and will be sorely missed.
Keith, a native of Iowa, graduated from the University of Iowa and began a 35 year career with Price Waterhouse Coopers, LLC. Keith became a petroleum expert and a partner in the Houston office. He subsequently moved to San Francisco where he was the managing partner for PWC on the Chevron account. In 2000 Keith and his wife, Jeanne, chose to live in Chadds Ford when Keith transferred to Philadelphia to become managing partner on the Du Pont account. Keith is now retired and enjoys spending time with his family and playing golf.
Karl Kuerner Jr. – Outstanding Citizen of the Year 2014
Andrew Wyeth memorized Karl Kuerner Jr. in his painting of the modest farmer. He further vividly shared Karl’s farm to the world with a major portion of his paintings of this farm and its people. As his son Karl appropriately stated ” Karl Kuerner Jr. is a simple man that loves the earth. He is a man of the earth and a very generous man.” His generosity was vividly displayed when he donated 33 acres of his farm, his barn and his house to the Brandywine Conservancy. He still walks his farm daily in search of Indian arrow heads and deer antlers, once discovering a cannon ball from the Independence War. For many years he farmed his land raising a herd of cattle. Karl Jr. loves his land and his family and friends. So did Andrew Wyeth whose numerous paintings were of this farm and its people. The Civic Association is proud to bestowed the Citizen of the Year on this”man of the earth”, Karl Kuerner Jr.
Bruce Prabel – Chosen First Outstanding Citizen – 2013
The Civic Association of Chadds Ford has chosen it’s first-ever Outstanding Chadds Ford Citizen of the Year for 2013: Bruce Prabel of Heyburn Road! Bruce has been volunteering in the community since he moved here 32 years ago with his family. Bruce holds the record for participation in the Civic Association’s Roadside Cleanup. He has participated in almost every Roadside Cleanup since the Civic Association re-started the biannual cleanup in 1993. Bruce’s extensive list of volunteer activities include: Township Roadmaster, Tax Collector, author and “negotiator” of required PA Emergency Action Plan for Hilloch Dam & Lake community with PA Dept of Environmental Protection for protection of the community, President of UHS Parents Basketball Boosters Club, and a volunteer at the CF Historical Society. Bruce has volunteered hundreds and hundreds of hours on Township special projects over the years including increasing collections of tax revenues, proposal of a burning ordinance, review of a proposal for Township-wide rezoning to cluster housing while restricting historical 2 acre minimum residential homes to near zero (proposal was cancelled and not passed), and detailed needed revisions of Local Service Tax (LST) law to bring it into compliance with PA State law. Bruce attended the University of Michigan and the University of Utah, attaining a B.S. Degree in Chemistry in 1963. Bruce, his wife Marianne, and two sons built their home in Chadds Ford in 1979, with their sons attending Unionville High School during the early 1980’s. He was employed by the Dupont Company in technical sales, marketing, product and business management positions for 29 years.
To establish as a goal of the board the implementation of a program to recognize residents for their dedication to the betterment of the community; an ‘Outstanding Chadds Ford Citizen’Board Minutes – January 9, 2014
Additional Honorees and Lifetime Members
Tony Francis (2003)
For founding the Association and 10 years of service as a Director and Secretary
Clara Todd (2003)
For 10 years of service as Treasurer
Don Weiss (2008)
For his invaluable assistance with the By-Laws
Louise Varney (2009)
For 15 years of service on the Board of Directors
Pat Foell (2014)
For her numerous contributions and designing the Board’s business membership marketing plan
Requirements for Application
Nominees for this award have worked to create a strong sense of community within the Township, supported its residents through volunteer activities, or helped retain the Township’s unique historical quality and rural character.
- Must be a resident of Chadds Ford Township, Delaware County.
- Is not employed by Chadds Ford Township.
- Accomplishments are volunteer rather than paid.
- Nomination not primarily based on political work or affiliation.
- Nomination based primarily on work done in rather than outside the Township.
- Accomplishments align with the CFTRA mission of building community, maintaining our history and the rural nature of the Township.
- Submissions for the Chadds Ford Citizen of the Year are open year round to the public.