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The Genesee Chamber of Commerce honored Donna Saskowski and five other Batavia businesses at their 40th Annual Awards Ceremony Saturday. Saskowski was named 2011 Geneseean of the Year.

During her acceptance speech she attributed her strong work ethic to her parents who raised her and her nine siblings on a farm in Corfu. A tearful Saskowski gave a special thank you to her mother, the late Helen Trowbridge.

“The absolute biggest inspiration of my life was my mother. When we were young she did private duty nursing… She would often care for her friends, neighbors and family even if they couldn’t afford to pay her. She was always faithfully involved in her church and community,” said Saskowski.

Some of Saskowski’s acts of service include Secretary of the Batavia Rotary, Troop leader for the Girl Scouts and YWCA board member. She was also awarded social worker of the year by her alma mater, The University at Buffalo in 2010.  

The accomplishment she’s most known for around town is working as the Executive Director of the Genesee ARC. During the ceremony she gave the organization a big nod of appreciation.  

Saskowski’s last thank you of the night was saved for her husband for being very supportive throughout the years.

“Of course to my wonderful husband Paul, my full gratitude. He has been my touch stone… since I was 14. He keeps me grounded in reality and when I am in risk of spinning out of control he makes sure I don’t, without him none of this would have been possible,” said Saskowski.

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