Citizen of the Year
Each year in late summer, nominations for a Citizen of the Year are accepted.
Nominees should exemplify the Rotary ideal of “Service above Self”, which is someone who makes significant contributions in service to others to improve the community and the world around them through their volunteer efforts.
Nominations should include the name of the nominee and a short write-up on why the person should be considered for this significant honor.
2020 Citizens of the Year honored for work creating Umbrella Alley
First time award was given to three individuals in same year
Coronavirus upended many plans for our society causing disruptions and changes among the
lives and activities of our community. Yet, it is not surprising that the individuals who worked so
hard to get Umbrella Alley completed never let a virus derail them from their goal.
A number of citizens worked and played various roles in the Umbrella project, but committees
never succeed without passionate leadership. Leadership for the Umbrella Alley Project came
from Rick and Raeann Guiley and David Yeagley. For their efforts and undaunted work coupled
with a never-give-up attitude, they were unanimously chosen by the Louisville Rotary Club as
Louisville’s 2020 Citizens of the Year.
Awards were presented to the three individuals during the Sept. 19 Unplugged in the Alley
event during an impromptu announcement. It was only appropriate that they were honored
and celebrated in the space they imagined and made happen.
Citizens of the Year are selected for their public service, volunteer work and contributions to
the community. The Louisville Rotary Club has been honoring Citizens of the Year since 1975
and for the 45 years, this is the first time three persons have be honored in the same year.
Stroll through the alley on any day and you will see people taking graduation, engagement, and
birthday pictures, chatting over coffee, and using the outdoor space for business and
organization discussions. The concept started as a way to add bright colors and energy to
downtown Louisville. It also brings people to or back to town to enjoy the alley and support
other businesses and attractions in town.
Inspired by displays seen in other cities around the world, it took a very dilapidated alley and
turned it into one of the most beautiful attractions around. Visitors from all over Stark County
and Northeast Ohio have stopped by the alley, thanks in part to a strong social media presence
and numerous features on Ohio TV stations and in newspapers.
Follow Umbrella Alley pictures, videos, and events on Facebook at
https://www.facebook.com/umbrellaalley/ or Instagram at
Better yet, enjoy it in person in the 200 Block of E. Main St. and appreciate the Service Above
Self provided by these leaders and many others for the community.
Rick and Raeann Guiley
“Who could have ever thought the joy and smiles and life this addition would bring to
downtown Louisville during this most unusual time? Thank you for being a tireless advocate for
Louisville for so many years!” --Lisa Bole
“Her dedication has taken hundreds of hours of her time working with businesses,
organizations, vendors, fundraising efforts, and informing local media. She did so believing in
Louisville and believing in the task at hand. Raeann’s results have built a sense of immense
community pride. That pride extends beyond just the confines of the old downtown and has
spread to the entire City.”—Rick Guiley
Rick is a local attorney and a city councilman and Vice Mayor. He has volunteered for many
local boards over the years including the Louisville Scholarship Foundation and was a founding
member of the Louisville Community Foundation. His passion for the alley developed about
five years ago with numerous presentations. He is a graduate of Louisville High School and the
University of Akron.
Raeann is the owner of Pink Oil Safety and teaching instructor. Also involved with many of the
same groups as Rick, she has also served as the chair of the Louisville Constitution Committee.
She is credited with balancing a career and other civic volunteering work while creating
partnerships and connecting with donors to complete this dream for the city. Raeann
graduated from LHS and Miami University.
“David was instrumental in creating Umbrella Alley. He was the genius behind
designing the world’s first known overhead display for alleys that is on a pulley system. The use
of the pulley system uniquely changes the dynamics of how the alley can be used.”—Rick Guiley
David is an architect and designer with Michael D. Yeagley and Associates. He has been a long
time member of Rotary Club serving as Club President, active with the student Foreign
Exchange program, and is the current Sergeant at Arms and board member. He is also a board
member of the Louisville-Nimishillen Historical Society. David is a 1984 graduate of LHS.