Sue Pap

Sue Pap, owner of Central Park Coffee Co. in Owatonna, serves a customer Wednesday morning. Pap was named the Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism’s Ambassador of the Year Friday night at the annual meeting. (Ashley Stewart/People’s Press)

OWATONNA — In Central Park Coffee Co. owner Sue Pap’s line of work, she sees a lot of familiar faces.

And being an Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism ambassador for the last 19 years has given her the opportunity to see new people and places within the community.

“I’m so lucky to be an ambassador,” Pap said. “At a coffee shop, I see a lot of the same people and they like to know what’s going on in the community and I’m able to provide them that.”

And she’s been quite a few places and met quite a few new faces this past year.

At the annual chamber meeting Friday night, Pap was named Ambassador of the Year.

“It’s a very nice honor,” she said. “I love what I do and I just do it.”

Pap said she is kind of embarrassed about being named Ambassador of the Year because she has received the recognition before.

She has been named Ambassador of the Year about five times, Pap said.

An ambassador is someone who served on the chamber board of directors, and Pap served in the early 1990s for three years.

Once an ambassador, Pap said she earns points attending appearances and Business After Hours, wearing her green jacket, recruiting new members and reaching out to the community. At the end of the year, the ambassador with the most points receives the award.

“I enjoy being out in the community and enjoy what the chamber does in the community and don’t want to miss anything,” Pap said.

Pap said once an ambassador services 20 years, he or she becomes an emeritus, which means some of the duties are reduced.

“I won’t change my ways because of that,” she said. “It’s been a great opportunity. I’ve been places that people have never been and met people that I probably wouldn’t have.”

Reach reporter Ashley Stewart at 444-2378 or follow her on @OPPashley

Reach reporter Ashley Stewart at 444-2378 or follow her on @OPPashley

Owatonna People's Press reporter covering Steele County, Blooming Prairie and Medford government as well as health, transportation and community happenings. University of St. Thomas graduate.

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