Holleman gives, receives praise at live oak tree dedication

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After receiving praise from members of the community and her peers, Wrightsville Beach town clerk Sylvia Holleman gave praise back to God, and thanked the community and colleagues, during a Friday afternoon ceremony in the Wrightsville Beach Municipal Complex that dedicated a tree honoring her recent statewide award.

The mayor, town manager and nearly a dozen other municipal clerks joined members of the community at the ceremony, where Holleman, a 26-year employee and 16-year clerk of the town of Wrightsville Beach, had a live oak tree dedicated in honor of her recent acknowledgement by the N.C. Association of Municipal Clerk as the 2017 North Carolina Clerk of the Year.

Penny Spicer-Sidbury, clerk for the neighboring Wilmington city government, had strong praise for Holleman during the ceremony, saying that Holleman was a woman who “wants no recognition” for her work, which was precisely why she deserved it. Spicer-Sidbury said that Holleman developed a reputation as the clerk to call for donations and materials when organizing an event.

“She stacks the house and she does it all by herself,” Spicer-Sidbury said of Holleman. “She’s phenomenal. She represents you so well. She’s all that she can be, all the time.”

Town manager Tim Owens said the award was a first for Wrightsville Beach, but well-earned for the employee whose pleasant demeanor made her popular with her colleagues.

“She’s never said a bad word about anyone and no one has ever said a bad thing about her,” said Owens, who noted that Holleman’s organizational ability made her an asset for the town of Wrightsville Beach. “She just makes our jobs that much easier. You can try to challenge her, but she is unflappable.”

The tree is located on Bob Sawyer Drive, in the Wrightsville Beach Municipal Complex, near the intersection with Causeway Drive. A plaque noting Holleman’s award will be placed at the base of the tree.

Elaine Hunt, president of the N.C. Association of Municipal Clerk’s, said that Holleman had developed a reputation throughout the state as “one of the best” and had proven skillful at mentoring young clerks.

“It says a lot about your abilities and a lot about you,” Hunt said upon presenting the plaque to Holleman.

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