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Recognized for giving back

White City resident Joy Reich has been given the annual Chairman’s Award for her decades of volunteer work to improve the unincorporated community north of Medford.

Jackson County’s citizen-of-the-year award is bestowed annually by the chairman of the Jackson County Board of Commissioners.

“The Chairman’s Award recognizes a local resident whose lifetime achievements have gone above and beyond the responsibilities of good citizenship in making a profound difference in Jackson County,” said Rick Dyer, the current chairman of the board.

Dyer said Reich was a key player in the formation of the White City Enhanced Law Enforcement District, which brings extra Jackson County Sheriff’s Office patrol coverage to the community. She also helped bring a system of maintained street lights to the area through the White City Lighting District.

A White City resident living at the same address for 60 years and now a great-grandmother, Reich taught in the Eagle Point School District for 22 years.

“However, she did not actually retire — obviously. She merely shifted her involvement in the community to other endeavors,” Dyer said.

She has long served as the volunteer manager for the Cascade Community Pool, which has been able to keep operating in part because of grants Reich secured. She’s also written successful grant applications to improve parks, Dyer said.

Commissioner Colleen Roberts thanked Reich for serving as a leader in the community.

“You are the cog that makes the wheel of White City turn,” Roberts told her during an awards ceremony this month at the Jackson County Courthouse in downtown Medford.

Reich’s volunteer work has included serving on the budget committees for the law enforcement and lighting districts, the White City Elementary School Parent Teacher Organization, the Youth Against Drugs Committee, the White City Community Improvement Association and the Skate Park Committee.

“I think of all the things that I’ve done, the lights in White City are the most important,” Reich said with a laugh. “Every time I drive down the street and can see where to turn, I think, ‘How wonderful this is that I can see now to turn.’ So I appreciate this award and thank you very much.”