Don Romines addresses a crowd at Saturday's annual Houston Area Chamber of Commerce banquet.

A Houston businessman and longtime Houston City Council member was honored Saturday with a “Lifetime Achievement Award,” recognizing his service to the community.

Franklin “Don” Romines received the honor during the Houston Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual banquet at the community building at the chamber’s fairgrounds on North U.S. 63.

A fixture on the Houston City Council for about 30 years, Romines’ dedication to the town’s progress was highlighted before a nearly full house at the chamber event. City Administrator Larry Sutton said Romines has provided leadership on nearly every significant project occurring in the city for the last three decades. Romines is the city council’s longtime mayor pro tem, represents citizens in a ward south of Highway 17 and has served on numerous committees to chart Houston’s progress. By Sutton’s calculation, Romines’ tenure means he’s attended 720 regular council meetings over the 30 years.

In addition to the city service, Romines has worked to better the community in other ways — from civic organizations to years on the community’s Houston Development Co. that works to attract jobs, Sutton said. Romines is a principal in the family car business, Romines Motor Co. Inc,  founded by his father, Glenn Sr. Looking on as he accepted the award were his wife, Barbara, and two sons, Frank and Tyler, as well as family and employees.

Romines said his involvement in community service was sparked by his father and mother, Vera, Houston’s first female mayor, who encouraged their three sons and daughter to give back to the town. “If you take something from your community, you also need to give back,” Romines said his late parents told the siblings.

Romines also was presented with a Missouri Senate proclamation recognizing his accomplishments from Sen. Mike Cunningham of Rogersville.

The presentation was the highlight of a ’50s-themed night — which featured tables with memorabilia from that timeframe and some of those attending dressing to the era. Walls highlighted the 1950s through local pictures of the timeframe and a multimedia presentation showed Houston. Kathy Richardson presented a program that guided those attending to life in Houston in the 1950 — everything from the arrival of television to the purchase of the town’s electric system and paving streets.

Her talk preceded installation of the chamber’s 2015 officers. They are: Gayla Bratton, Tammy Cantrell, Bud Evans, Jerad Gentry, Travis Rector, Tyler Romines, Bruce Sheets, Kim Stipanovich and Joe Stockard.

Many volunteers who helped on chamber activities during the year also were recognized. Many donated items for a silent auction.

Taking the top award for decorated tables was the City of Houston, based on contributions received from those attending. Other entities that decorated tables were: D&L Florist, Houston Herald, Houston Schools, Infinite Entertainment and Jarrett Enterprises, Intercounty Electric, Landmark Bank, Little House Gifts and More, Missouri Sun Solar, Paws N Claws, Romines Motor Co. Inc., The Animal Shelter of Texas County, Texas County Memorial Hospital and Walmart.

Members of this year’s banquet committee were: Sharon Tyger, Sheila Walker, Joyce Campbell, Leesa Smith, Gayla Bratton, Brenda Jarrett and Tammy Cantrell. 

Here is a list of previous recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award

Elmer Murfin – 1991

Ellen McVay and Glenn Romines Sr. – 1992

Nolan Hutcheson – 1993

Clay Forbes – 1994

Lynn “Shorty” Evans – 1995

Junior Wilson and Alice Crawford – 1996

Columbus Tuttle, Emmett Frost and Dr. Joe Wall – 1997

Carrie Frederick – 1998

Windsor “Pete” Elmore and George Boesl – 1999

Dale Stilley – 2000

Mel Flowers – 2001

John Gatlin – 2002

Don Watson – 2003

Joyce Campbell – 2004

Dr. Joe Wall – 2005

Rose and David Impey – 2006

Wilburn and Imogene Elmore – 2007

Dr. I.C. Keeney – 2008

Rev. Ed Hamilton – 2009

Bonnie Carter – 2010

Carl Honeycutt – 2011

James Marcus Forbes – 2012

W.T. “Ted” Scheets – 2013

If you take something from your community, you also need to give back.” 

PDF: Introductory remarks about Don Romines made by City Administrator Larry Sutton

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