Biz Buzz: Cambria honors a tireless volunteer

The Cambria Chamber of Commerce has honored volunteer Delores “Delo” Doyle as its Citizen of the Year.

“I’ve tried to be a part of Cambria. I love Cambria,” Doyle told the gathering of more than 100 chamber members and associates at an awards and installation dinner Jan. 18.

“I’ve tried not to be a recluse in the house,” she said, but rather “an integral part of the community.”

Delo Doyle’s list of involvements spans a quarter century and a half-dozen nonprofit organizations and agencies.

Both Doyle and her husband, Clark Doyle, are unsung heroes and people motivators, according to friend and chamber board member Steve Kniffen.

“Not all their volunteer duties have been big, flamboyant ones, but they’re just as essential,” he said.

Since the Doyles moved to Cambria in 1984, the dedicated go-getter has been vital to many local nonprofit groups and agencies.

“(Delo) sold stuffed animals out of her garage” to raise money for the Cambria Library, Kniffen said. “She believed in the library when nobody else did. Being a former school teacher, she wasn’t going to let this town go without a newer, better library.”

Doyle was president of Lady Lions, the University Women of Cambria and Friends of the Cambria Library for two years each.

She’s organized or been part of numerous scholarship committees, including those for the American Association of University Women, a retired teachers’ group and the American Legion Auxiliary.

The retired teacher has been a chamber docent and accumulated nearly 3,000 hours as a Hearst Castle volunteer.

Doyle estimates she’s been a Castle docent longer than any other current participant.

Clark Doyle, a proud husband of 63 years, said, “I think the award is great, because she does a lot and she really enjoys it. She’s a very thoughtful person, very giving. She really believes in doing a lot for other people.”

Just one of her many lesser-known contributions to the community is her tutoring of a young man who, inspired by Delo Doyle’s commitment to him and his wife, has become a U.S. citizen and is working toward getting his GED certificate, an alternative for a high school diploma.

“It’s good to still use some of my teacher training to do good things,” Doyle said shyly but with obvious pride. “But to win Citizen of the Year I still can’t believe it.”

— Kathe Tanner