April 8, 2016

Scouts honor ‘Distinguished Citizen’


Joe McIntyre/staff photographer
Don Richards, owner of Homer-based Complete Construction Concepts and selected to receive the 2016 Cortland County Distinguished Citizen Award, looks out on South Main Street in Homer on Thursday.

Staff Reporter

HOMER — To this day Don Richards is still known as “Coach.”
“I coached the town of Homer Little League and now I have these men who are around my son’s age, 24 or so, and they call me coach,” Richards said Thursday.
Richards, 56, of Summerhill, is not a native. Summerhill isn’t his home because he was born here, but because he made ithis home. That effort is why he will be honored by the Boy Scouts of America, Baden-Powell Council, at this year’s annual fundraising dinner, presented with the 2016 Cortland County Distinguished Citizen Award.
The award has been around for about the past 10 years and recognizes people who set good examples for others and who demonstrate concern and significant care for theircommunities.
Richards was picked by a committee of past recipients, involved with the Scoutsand involved with thecommunity.
“Don has been part of the community since 1979 and is as close to a naturalized Cortland resident as it comes,” said Steve Cinquanti a member of the nominating committee. “He is involved in all levels of public service. He is a generous person with his time and resources.”
Richards, who owns Complete Construction Concepts in Homer, moved to Homer36 years ago. Richards grew up on a large dairy farm in Malone with his parents and eightsiblings.
He came to the area in 1979 while visiting his aunt anduncle and grew to like thecommunity. So he stayed. Since then, he has helped with Boy Scouts, Homer Business Association, community Little League and the Cortland Rotary Breakfast Club. Richards’ developed the Ride for Rotary event, which coincides with the club’s Emergency Services Day. Richards has twochildren, Lindsay Richards, 27, of Newark and Greg Richards, 24, of Homer.
“I was not in the Boy Scouts, but I did volunteer when my son was in the Scouts,” Richards said.
Richards will receive the award May 5 during the Cortland County Distinguished Citizen Award Dinner at Cortland Country Club on Route 281 in Cortlandville.

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