The Downtown Development Authority honored Romans for their service to the downtown district Friday.

Normally presented at a holiday awards gala, the award were presented to recipients outside City Hall at different times Friday so as not to draw a big crowd.

Jay Shell is the recipient of the William M. Fricks Award for years of service to the downtown district. He has not only operated businesses downtown, The Brewhouse and Rome City Brewing Company, but has also served on the DDA board for eight years. His efforts as a concert and event promoter have brought many famous entertainers, not just to Rome, but to downtown Rome through the years.

Jack Pearson accepted the Economic Partnership Award for developing the Hoyt Hill by the River homes at the intersection of Sixth Avenue and West First Street. The eight townhome style condominiums brought new style and new tax dollars to downtown in 2020.

Harry and Dawn Brock received the Downtown Champion Award. The couple lives downtown and are always doing something to make downtown a better place to live, work and play.

The Quality of Life Award was presented to Blooms on Broad, an effort of the Community Foundation for Greater Rome. The initiative has brightened up the downtown district with planters at intersections up and down Broad Street. Watters Landscape & Associates helped keep the planters alive and beautiful throughout the year.

The Golden Nail Award was presented to Cabell Sweeney who brought her art studio, Cabell Design to the River District at 9 Bale Street. The award goes to a downtown business or property owner for exemplary contributions to the physical character of downtown through cosmetic or commercial means such as restoration of a downtown façade, or to a new business owner who embraced the spirit of downtown.

The Volunteer of the Year for 2020 went to Ashley Ray. If something was happening in downtown Rome this year — Ray was there.

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