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Sauer award winners praised for activism, generosity

Stuart and Carola Cohn receive the Richard C. and Vina L. Sauer Charitable Leadership Award from George Bond. Stuart and Carola Cohn receive the Richard C. and Vina L. Sauer Charitable Leadership Award from George Bond.

FLAT ROCK — A love for working with youth, commitment to social action and willingness to give their support and guidance to nonprofit endeavors in Henderson County earned Stuart and Carola Cohn recognition Wednesday as the winners of the Richard C. and Vina L. Sauer Charitable Leadership Award presented by the Community Foundation of Henderson County.

"They are unparalleled in their caring and compassion," George Bond said of the couple. "It can honestly be said that they both talk the talk and walk the walk."
Dr. Cohn and his wife have supported the Children and Family Resource Center and particularly its United Agenda for Children, the Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy, Pisgah Legal Services and many other local charities.
"Rabbi Cohen at Agudas Israel told us that this couple is among his favorite congregants," said Bond, who read the award citation during a luncheon at Kenmure Country Club. "He shared that they bring with them a most genuine form of intelligence and a generosity of spirit that infuses their personalities and their participation in the temple.
"IN particular, he is aware of their passion for keeping current with the news from the local to the international level," Bond continued. "There is an old Jewish legend, he says, claiming that the world is sustained by by the work of just 36 righteous people without whom the world could not stand. They are quiet men and women of great virtue and they probably do not even know that they play that role. This couple is among the most likely to be counted with those 36. They are simply wonderful human beings."

The Saurer award, recognizing community leaders for volunteerism and philanthropy, is one of the most anticipated awards of the year in the philanthropy and leadership community. A list of 18 past recipients reads like a who's who not only of important donors but of community leaders who have started, improved or built organizations that help the county from health to the arts to youth and military veterans.

Past award winners are Frank Ewbank, Kenneth Youngblood, Morris Kaplan, Kermit Edney, William E. “Jamie” Jamison, William “Bill” Stokes, Jr., Marcia Caserio, Eleanora Meloun, Tom and Sue Fazio, Frank Byrd, Dr. Colin Thomas, Dot Marlow, Duane and Peggy McKibbin, Jeff Miller, the Dr. Kathleen McGrady Family, Robert and Doris Eklund, Teddi Segal and Marian Lowry.

In his keynote address, Tom Lambeth, a senior fellow at the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, urged the Community Foundation members to continue to their work, even through hard times. He told of a church built in the 16th century, opposed by many as too extravagant in a hard time. It stands today, along with an inscription, "In the worst of times do the best of things."
"I hope that this foundation, even in difficult times, will as you determine do the best of things," Lambeth said.