Portland, October 11th. Over 1,000 people were on hand at the Convention Center to celebrate outstanding Oregonians. Governor Kitzhaber (and former Governors Kulongoski, Roberts and Atiyeh) hosted the annual event.  Each year, the Governors pay tribute to only four individuals, companies and/or organizations which have contributed to the greatness of State. (Photo Credit: Andie Petkus.)  The Governors’ Gold Awards also benefited Special  Olympics Oregon, a unique organization serving Special Olympics athletes since 1972.

2011 Governors' Gold Awardees (from left to right): Dick Withnell, Steve McCoid, Governor Kulongoski, Governor Kitzhaber, Jean M. Auel, Ken Austin, Joan Austin, Governor Roberts, Governor Atiyeh, Dan Wieden and Steven G. Hackett.

2011 Governors' Gold honorees (from left to right): Dick Withnell, Steve McCoid, Governor Kulongoski, Governor Kitzhaber, Jean M. Auel, Ken Austin, Joan Austin, Governor Roberts, Governor Atiyeh, Dan Wieden and Steven G. Hackett.

Recipients for 2011 were: Ken & Joan Austin, Co-Founders, A-dec, Inc. Steve McCoid, President and CEO of the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, Dan Wieden, Co-Founder of Wieden+Kennedy, Mark Donegan, Chairman and CEO Steven G. Hackett, President and COO, Investment Cast Products from Precision Castparts Corp.

Jean M. Auel, International Best-Selling Author received a Special Achievement Award. And the Al and Pat Reser Civic Leadership Award went to, Dick Withnell, Chairman of the Board, Withnell Motor Company.

Gerry Frank taking a moment to honor the former Governor and Senator, Mark Hatfield.

Gerry Frank taking a moment to honor his friend, former Governor and Senator, Mark Hatfield

Governor Roberts and CEO Margaret Hunt at the 2012 Governors Gold Awards.

Governor Roberts and CEO Margaret Hunt at the 2011 Governors Gold Awards

Gert Boyle presenting the Shriver Greatness Award to Special Olympics Oregon World Game athlete, Christy Clark.

Columbia Sportswear Chairman, Gert Boyle presenting the Shriver Greatness Award to Special Olympics Oregon World Game athlete, Christy Clark.

More than $225,000 was raised for Special Olympics Oregon, thanks to the generosity of the individuals in attendance at this year’s Governors’ Gold Awards.

Special Olympics Oregon and World Games athlete, Kevin Zwart, gives the athlete oath "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt"  to the more than 1000 people in attendance.

Special Olympics Oregon and World Games athlete, Kevin Zwart, gives the athlete oath "Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt" to the more than 1000 people in attendance.

 

Special Olympics Oregon Board Member and (Law Enforcement Torch Run) LETR partner Joel Goodwin and Special Olympics Oregon World Game Athlete, Jillian Smalley light the Torch of Hope for the 2012 Governors Gold Awards.

Special Olympics Oregon Board Member and (Law Enforcement Torch Run) LETR partner Joel Goodwin and Special Olympics Oregon World Game Athlete, Jillian Smalley light the Torch of Hope for the 2011 Governors Gold Awards.

The mission of Special Olympics Oregon is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy, and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills, and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes, and the community.

Photos by Andie Petkus.

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