One of them has helped spread the word of Warren across the state. Another put his heart and soul into one of the town’s most esteemed buildings. And a third has used his love of the land, and of his home town, to make Warren a better place.
Three Warrenites — Discover Warren’s Katie Dickson, the Jefferson Street Armory’s Ed Theberge and dairy farmer and USDA official Paul Brule — were honored by the Warren Town Council Tuesday night for making Warren a better place. Ms. Dickson and Mr. Brule were both named Citizen of the Year, and Mr. Theberge was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for his many preservation-minded efforts over the years.
As the owner of the Wooden Midshipman on Water St. and a driving force behind Discover Warren, Ms. Dickson has been one of Warren’s greatest advocates, making the town a popular destination for hip new shops, food and music festivals, and buzz. Yet, she said after receiving her award Tuesday night that she was just trying to fit in when she opened the Wooden Midshipman several years ago.
“I kind of came to Warren, kind of by accident, just to open my shop at the recommendation of friends who lived here,” she said. “I could not be more delighted to live and work here.”
Council president Chris Stanley read a resolution in Ms. Dickson’s honor, which read:
Whereas, in the four years since Katherine E. Dickson, moved to town she has energized the business community and breathed new life into Discover Warren with her creative and fearless style.
Whereas, a merchant herself, Katherine E. Dickson has donated her time and talents to revitalize and grow local commerce. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Discover Warren, and was one of the first appointees on the Warren Economic Development Board. Katie has a hand in numerous events from the Warren Walkabout and Hometown Revival to the Bodacious Bee, benefiting the Bristol Warren Educational Foundation.
Whereas, Katherine E. Dickson, President of FusionWorks Rhode Island Modern Dance Company, based in Lincoln, in order to promote the local business and arts scene, brought the company’s annual fundraiser FusionFest to town where it has become a signature Warren event.
Therefore, it is with gratitude and appreciation that the members of the Town Council recognize Katherine E. Dickson as a 2013 Citizen of the Year and congratulate her on behalf of all Warren residents.
Mr. Brule, who was instrumental in helping the Hope and Main food incubator group receive a large loan from the US Department of Agriculture seemed surprised and honored when Mr. Stanley to come up to the podium to receive his Citizen of the Year Award.
“I guess everybody knew but me,” he joked, looking back at his family and friends in the audience.
“I appreciate this very much; didn’t know I deserved it. I’ve lived here all my life. There’s no better place to live.
Reads his resolution:
Whereas, Paul E. Brule, State Executive Director (SED) for the United States Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency, Rhode Island State Office, has been instrumental in obtaining federal grant money for the Town of Warren.
Whereas, Paul E. Brule, a local dairy/cattle farmer since 1967, served for more
than 20 years as a volunteer firefighter for the Touisset Engine Company, Station 6, achieving the rank of2n lieutenant. He has served on the Bristol Warren Regional School Committee and as a member of the district’s subcommittee of the Joint Finance Committee. In 2004 he was named Farmer of the Year by the Kickemuit Grange #24 of Warren.
Whereas, Mr. Brule currently serves as administrator and chief fundraiser of the Deanria M. Brule Educational Scholarship Foundation, named in memory of his daughter, which each year awards scholarships to deserving Warren residents.
Therefore, it is with gratitude and appreciation that the members of the Town Council recognize Paul E. Brule as a 2013 Citizen of the Year, and congratulate him on behalf of all Warren residents.
Mr. Theberge is most well-known of late for his work rehabilitating the old Jefferson Street, but he has been involved for years with other preservation-minded efforts, like the reconstruction of Warren’s bronze cannon, Pallas and Tantae, in which he played a role. He has also served as a town volunteer and councilor for many years, in many capacities.
All he did, he told the crowd Tuesday, he did for his beloved town.
“Anything I’ve done for the Town of Warren, its’ because of the people,” he said. “I embrace what we are doing for the history of Warren, and I encourage everybody to participate as volunteers.”
Reads the resolution in support of his lifetime achievement award:
“Whereas, Edward J. Theberge has championed the restoration and revival of the Historic Warren Armory, a gothic Revival civic treasure built in 1942-1843. A tireless fundraiser, Mr. Theberge has also secured $150,000 in grants for the project. He is a member of the Warren Historical Armory Inc. Board of Directors and serves as its treasurer.
“Whereas, a longtime Warren resident, Mr. Theberge is vice chairman and a founding member of the Warren Voluntary Historic District Committee. He is a former Warren Town Councilor, George Hail Library Trustee and served on the former Warren Waterfront Committee.
“Whereas, in addition to his efforts on behalf of the Armory, Edward J. Theberge’s passion for preservation has extended to the refurbishment of the historic cannons “the Tantae” and “the Pallas,” the Baker Street Federal Blues carriage barn and the Maxwell House, a significant 18th Century colonial gable and working museum
“Therefore, be it resolved, that we, the members of the Town Council and on behalf of the residents of Warren, extend our thanks and appreciation to Edward J. Theberge, for his continuous and continued contributions to the community and do herby congratulate him as the recipient of this Lifetime Achievement Award. Approved this 11th day of February 2014.