Commonwealth Awards to recognize York City redevelopment

Jason Addy
York Dispatch

York City’s recent revitalization efforts will be the showpiece when the 2017 Commonwealth Awards come to town Thursday, Dec. 7.

A number of local developers, community leaders and advocacy organizations will be recognized for their work to make York CIty a better place to live and work, according to a news release.

The awards ceremony will be held from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at The Bond on East King Street. Reservations for the event can be made through the website of 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania, the statewide nonprofit organization hosting the 2017 Commonwealth Awards.

Award winners: RSDC Inc. President and CEO Josh Hankey will accept the inaugural Louis J. Appell Jr. Leadership Award on behalf of his company, formerly known as Royal Square Development and Construction.

Josh Hankey, president of RSDC, shakes hands with Dylan Bauer while being honored with the first ever  LouisJ. Appell Jr. Leadership Award, the highest award given by the state-wide non-profit 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017.  John A. Pavoncello photo

The award was named in honor of Appell for his philanthropy in and around York City and for his part in founding 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania, which promotes transforming and revitalizing neighborhoods through creative partnerships between residents, community organizations and private-sector businesses.

More:Friends, business leaders mourn loss of Appell

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RSDC will scoop the Louis J. Appell Jr. Leadership Award, the highest honor given out by the nonprofit organization, for its “outstanding private sector leadership and innovative investment promoting transformational and replicable community revitalization,” according to the release.

Over the past few years, RSDC has been at the forefront of the redevelopment push in downtown York City with numerous commercial-to-residential conversion and property rehabilitation projects.

Think Loud Development will be honored with the Platinum Commonwealth Award for converting a former factory at 210 York St. into its headquarters with a state-of-the-art recording studio and commercial space.

Two PNC Opportunity for All Awards will be given out Thursday, Dec. 7, with the Homes at Thackston Park taking home one and several groups that collaborated on the Salem Square Neighborhood Initiative sharing the other.

The York County Community Foundation, Downtown Inc, Warehaus, Yohn Properties, Distinct Property Management, Better York, the City of York and the York College Center for Community Engagement will each be recognized with a Commonwealth Award from 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania, according to the release.

York Revolution President Eric Menzer and longtime community leader Charles Bacas will take home the Board of Directors’ Award for their contributions over two decades to 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania.

“Eric and Charlie have been leaders — in the truest sense as both thinkers and doers — and two of the most consequential members of 10,000 Friends, so it is very fitting that we honor them, and it will be special to do so in their hometown of York,” 10,000 Friends Board Chair Caroline Boyce said in the release.