It was one of the finest in a career of fine hours, but after receiving this year's Citizen of the Year Award from the Rotary Club of Rockville on Monday, David Engelson went right back to his clients after the ceremony.
"Look," he said, grabbing at his phone and scrolling for a photo. "Look at this. We have to do something."
The picture was of shelves full of gaping holes where things like peanut butter, jelly, crackers - all stuff children would eat over the summer - should be sitting.
"In a week, the kids will be about of school and we will have families that will not have the free or reduced lunches," he said. "We have to get food to those people."
In about two minutes after the annual awards dinner concluded, Engelson proved the Rotary's point.
As a former educator and now the head of the Hockanum Valley Community Council and its food pantry, he has become a fixture in the community twice over.
"Engelson said he considered his latest profession - helping the less-fortunate," A gift from God."
Engelson also joined the Rotary on Monday. It was one of several highlights of the annual dinner at Georgina's in Bolton.
New Officers were also installed. The lineup includes:
• Victor Antico, president.
• Thora Cowperthwaite, vice president.
• Richard Bansavich, treasurer, director and past president.
• Marc Kogan, sergeant at arms.
• Dan Keune, director.
• Angela Atwater, director.
Bansavich was honored as the outgoing president. In assuming the presidency, Antico issued a two-part charge to the local ranks - do good works and have fun.
"If we keep this simple message, we will be as strong as we ever have been," he said.
The Rotary Club of Rockville draws its membership from Vernon, Tolland and Ellington.