Joe Cella Award - Carver of the Year

When Roger Schroeder, a past president of the LIWCA, lost his best friend Joe Cella in 1993, he felt strongly that Joe’s contributions to the carving world should be remembered. The following year, Roger established the Joe Cella Carver of the Year Award, presented annually. Since then, 17 members of the LIWCA have received the award in the form of a plaque. It reads:

The Joe Cella Carver of the Year Award is presented to __________, member of the Long Island Woodcarvers Association. __________ has exemplified the ideals and principles that Joe exemplified: giving of him(her)self, expressing good will, and exerting the extra effort to promote those qualities in the carving community.

The recipients, all dedicated carvers who offered much of themselves to the carving community, are the following:

1994 - Ellery Barnaby
1995 - Greg Krockta
1996 - Nat Friedson
1997 - Joel Hull
1998 - Cindi Neil
1999 - Roger Nancoz
2000 - Roger Schroeder
2001 - Harold Cannon
2002 - Carl Johnson
2003 - Phil LaGreco
2004 - Mike Quigley
2005 - Ed Sesack
2006 - Frank Barry
2007 - Birt Birkelund
2008 - Phil Gonsowski
2009 - Skip Goodwin
2010 - John Crawford
2011 - Harry Freeze 
2012 - Not Awarded
2013 - Ed Conti
2014 - Not Awarded
2015 - Not Awarded
2016 - Not Awarded
2017 - Not Awarded

Roger continues to reminisce about Joe, whom he met at a LIWCA meeting in 1978. Joe was an industrial arts teacher who never hesitated to share his knowledge of wood, tools and techniques. Joe went on to become president of the club from 1980 to 1982. In that last year of his presidency, he retired from teaching and moved to Key Largo, Florida. There he carved full time to support himself, creating a strong following among locals and visitors alike.

Voting for the Joe Cella Carver of the Year Award is held at the April meeting. Guidelines for voting are given, but no names are on the ballot. The award is presented at the June meeting. Start thinking about who you want to vote for...