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Stanko and Scott honored by Tread of Pioneers

Susan Cunningham

Natalie Stanko, 94, who has lived in Routt County for almost 70 years, is known for her teaching and volunteering career.

Delano Scott, who died in 1984, spent 47 years in local and state banking, starting as a janitor and teller. He worked his way up, eventually serving as president and CEO of the Routt County National Bank, and earned the name of the “Western Slope’s Champion Banker.”

Stanko and Scott were honored Tuesday night by the Tread of Pioneers Museum at the annual Leckenby/Larson Pioneer Awards ceremony and volunteer pie social.

Museum Director Candice Lombardo said she’s happy with the selections but that each year, award committiees have a hard time choosing just one person for each award.

“Each year, it’s really hard to choose because everyone who’s nominated and even some who are not nominated are deserving of this award,” Lombardo said. “We have so many people who make Routt County and the Yampa Valley special.”

Stanko received the Leckenby Award, an award that the museum has presented since 1980 to a living pioneer in the county.

Stanko was recognized for her teaching career, in which she taught sixth-grade classes and also substitute-taught classes. She influenced the community through raising her two children, helping with her friends’ children and serving in 4-H clubs and church, according to her nomination letter.

“She has enriched so many lives in Routt County,” the letter said.

Leckenby Award recipients must have lived in Routt County for at least 30 years and must be involved with the community.

Last year’s recipient was Bill Bowes, who was recognized for his service to the sport of skiing. Previous recipients include Don Lufkin, Dee Richards, Pat Holderness, Dorothy Wither, Gordy Wren and Lowell Whiteman.

Scott received the Stanley L. Larson Award, which has been presented since 1982 in honor of a deceased individual who made significant contributions to the area.

Scott, who was married to Doris Scott, has a legacy that lives on through the Scott Senior Center and the Del and Doris Scott Park.

In addition to leading Routt County National Bank, Scott was president of the Colorado Bankers Association and served an extended term as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank Board. He also served as president of the Steamboat Springs Chamber of Commerce, a city councilman, school and church trustee, fund-raiser and more.

“When Del Scott entered the room, there was respect, inspiration and humor,” the letter said. “He was a giant among men.”

Larson Award recipients are individuals who served public institutions in the area, preserved local history or contributed to the county’s heritage.

Last year’s recipient was George Cook, and past recipients include Claude Luekens, Carl Howelsen, Minnie Hertzog, Bob Gay, Charlotte Perry and Dr. John Solandt.

During the social, the museum’s approximately 50 volunteers also were recognized.

“Every single aspect of the museum is successful because of volunteers,” Lombardo said. “We’re nothing without them. They’re really the heart and soul of the organization.”


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