Four more 2018 Spirit of Marco Island award recipients announced


The Noontime Rotary Club of Marco Island has announced the names of four additional selections for the 2018 Spirit of Marco Island Awards. The honorees are Gary Landis, Rene and Tish Champagne and Dianna Dohm, all of whom, will be formally recognized at an awards dinner to be held on Sunday, April 15.

More:Marco Island Noontime Rotary announces first two Spirit award winners

Gary Landis was caught off guard by the announcement during a recent committee meeting at the American Cancer Society office, as a group of Rotarians interrupted their meeting to make the presentation.

From left, Marianne Iordanou, Jenny Cartwright, Brenda Rhinehart, Jane Watt, Durell Buzzini, Rene Champagne, Linda Sandlin and Dawn Vergo.

Landis was recognized for his years of service to our community through his work with various island organizations that include the Island Country Club Charitable Foundation where he serves as the volunteer chief executive officer, the American Cancer Society, where he previously served as the president of the board of directors and currently co-chairs the “Shoot Down Kids Cancer” committee. In addition, he and his wife Ann are active participants with Camp Able, which is a week-long camp for special need persons held each year at the St. Mark’s Episcopal Church.

Rene Champagne was also completely taken by surprise when a group of Rotarians made the announcement of his and his wife Tish’s selection at the Marco Island Academy High School. Also joining in on the surprise were Jane Watt the president of the Academy board and several of the Academy board members.

Rene and Tish Champagne have been supporters and benefactors of the Marco Island Academy for the past eight years with Rene currently serving as the vice-chair of the Board in addition to serving on the MIA leadership team. Tish has also served as the as the MIA’s ambassador of the environment camp and serves as the staff photographer.

Tish is very active with the Marco Island Historical Society where she currently serves on their board of directors. In addition, both she and Rene are major benefactors of MIHS having personally contributed financially to its success and have also generously opened up their home to host fundraisers.

From left, Tarik Ayasun, president of the Noontime Rotary Club, Durrell Buzzini, Dianna Dohm, Bill Young and Linda Sandlin.
From left, Pat Rutledge, Durrell Buzzini, Gary Landis and Linda Sandlin.

The fourth surprise presentation was made to Dianna Dohm at a recent Kiwanis meeting held at the Marco Island Chamber of Commerce board room, where Dianna serves as the executive director of the Chamber.

Dianna, was acknowledged for her years of volunteer service to our community. She is currently serving as the president of the Marco Island Fire-Rescue Foundation, she is a past president of the Kiwanis Club of Marco Island, has served on the Marco Island Beautification Committee and the Marco Island Civic Association board of directors. 

She also serves on the Board of the Marco Island Seafood Festival where she handles the marketing for the event. The festival is a joint venture hosted by the two Marco Island Rotary Clubs and the Kiwanis Club.  This event has raised more than $600,000 over the past 10 years for local charitable causes.

In 2016, Dianna was recognized as the Citizen of the Year for her community contributions. 

Gary Landis, Rene and Tish Champagne and Dianna Dohm, will all be formally presented with their 2018 Spirit of Marco Island Award at a Gala Awards Dinner and Silent Auction to be held on Sunday, April 15, at the Bistro Soleil Restaurant located in Old Marco.

The proceeds from the event and silent auction are used to support local charities and scholarships. For more information and tickets to the event, you may contact Al Diaz at 239-438-5285 or by email at