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Dr. Bil Kerrigan named Person of the Year by The Daily and Sunday Jeffersonian

KERRIGANAssociate Professor of History Dr. Bil Kerrigan has been named one of three 2008 Persons of the Year by The Daily and Sunday Jeffersonian newspaper.

Each December, the newspaper’s editorial staff reflects on the past year, thinking back on those whose contributions have helped make the community better. Dr. Kerrigan was chosen for his leadership on a variety of important community projects, as well as his efforts to preserve the regions’ history.

Most recently, Dr. Kerrigan spearheaded the effort to bring the Ohio Chautauqua to New Concord for the first time in the event’s history. The week-long event, which featured a variety of performances of famous historical figures from Ohio, was heavily attended by audiences from the region and from all over the state.

Dr. Kerrigan’s commitment to the community has gone far beyond his natural interest in history, however. An avid outdoorsman and kayaker, he was instrumental in the successful effort to build hiking trails and bridges around New Concord Reservoir, and has hosted several “introduction to kayaking” events which were sponsored by the New Concord Area Arts and Recreation District.

In addition to these community projects, Dr. Kerrigan also has worked with his students to produce three books on the history of the region. A Pictorial History of the Salt Fork Region was published last year, and Cambridge, Ohio was published in 2006. Soon to be released is A Pictorial History of Muskingum College. All are available at the Muskingum College Bookstore, or from Arcadia Publishing.

Beyond these activities, Dr. Kerrigan also has served on the board of the John and Annie Glenn Historic Site and has been a member of the New Concord Area Planning Task Force, as well as volunteering for “Let’s Pick It Up, New Concord,” an annual community clean-up event.

"I love this community,” Dr. Kerrigan says. “I love this region and the landscape. It’s a close-knit community. There’s a lot of neighborliness.”

To read the Jeffersonian article, click here. Photo courtesy of The Daily and Sunday Jeffersonian.