After two years in the city, UF President Kent Fuchs will be declared Gainesville’s citizen of the year today.
At a meeting of the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, to be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Fuchs will be awarded the Citizen of the Year award at the Hilton UF Conference Center at 1714 SW 34th St. The annual award is given to a Gainesville citizen who makes long-term, positive impacts on the city, said Susan Davenport, the CEO and president of the chamber.
Davenport said Fuchs is receiving the award partly in recognition of UF’s Strategic Development Plan, which is the university’s goals to work with the city to improve areas on and off campus.
“I think he’s just been such a tremendous addition to our community,” Davenport said.
Fuchs wrote in an email that others, including UF Senior Vice President Charlie Lane, who conceived the strategic development plan, deserve credit for the award.
“I will be accepting the award on behalf of the entire university, including Vice President Lane and all of the employees who work to make the Gainesville community stronger,” he said.
Fuchs said he was surprised by the award since he has only been in Gainesville for two years.
“I’ve received awards as a professor and for my work at universities but never from the community in which I’ve lived and worked,” he said.