Each year, in February, the MCC Board hosts its Annual Awards dinner for members, volunteers and sponsors. The purpose of the gathering is to thank those who have supported the organization in the prior year; honor those individuals and organizations that deserve special recognition; and swear-in the Board of Directors for the upcoming year. For most of the history of MCC, the Annual Awards Dinner has been held at Dover Straits Restaurant. There are three annual awards given out every year, each is named in honor of a Mundelein resident who served our community selflessly with great distinction.


In 1995, Mundelein MainStreet, now Mundelein Community Connection, lost a good friend in Debbie Mullen, owner of Debbie’s Floral. As a Past President and a member of our original steering committee, Debbie was instrumental in shaping our vision and the spirit of Mundelein MainStreet. Her commitment to this effort sets an example for us all.

In her honor, the Board of Directors annually presents the “Debbie Mullen Volunteer of the Year Award” to the person, or persons, who reflect Debbie’s spirit of volunteerism. Debbie’s name tops a perpetual plaque that lists yearly winners of the award. The 1st plaque was made possible by a contribution in Debbie’s name by Janie and M.J. Seiler.

This award acknowledges the efforts of these special individuals and inspires the many volunteers who share the “heart and soul” of Mundelein Community Connection.

2023 Winner: Bob Ward & Dave Shedor

Past Recipients

2022: Ray Mullen
2021: Bob Stadlman
2019: Ray Semple & Ray Ladewig
2018: Lars Rasmussen
2017: Pete Christie & Gary Gunther

2016: Diego Vargas & Florene Darr
2015: Mark Tan & Scott Smith
2014: Aurelia Spicuzza
2013: Mike Flynn & Maggie Csiha
2012: Steve Kovac & Vern Lappe

2011: Laura Murphy & Christa Lawrence
2010: On The Road Classics, and Stephanie Smith-Howard
2009: Gary Gunther, and Roger Nally
2008: Kenneth A. Miller
2007: Mike Flynn

2006: Evelyn Wernicke
2005: Mayor Kenneth H. Kessler
2004: Craig Lindgren
2003: Michael Flynn
2002: Ken Arnswald

2001: On The Road Classics Car Club of Mundelein
2000: Larry Idstein
1999: Nancy Piasecki & Tom Rogan
1998: Donna Morrison
1997: Judy Wiemer

1996: Karen & Bill Bovee
1995: Kevin Kristan
1994: Cher Duluga, Dick Edmunds, Bud Hansen
1993: Oscar Demski


In 2003, Mundelein MainStreet, now Mundelein Community Connection, lost another good friend, Leland “Trig” Watson, Jr. of the Historical Society of Fort Hill Country. As an Advisory Board Member and a member of Mundelein MainStreet, Trig was instrumental in historic preservation. His dedication, commitment and knowledge of Mundelein’s rich history were greatly appreciated by all.

In his honor, the Board of Directors and staff will present the “Leland Trig Watson, Jr. Business of the Year Award” to the business who reflects Trig’s spirit of volunteerism and dedication to the organization.

This award acknowledges the efforts of a special business that has been an inspiration to others to contribute their time and talent to Mundelein Community Connection.

2023 Winner: Oak Trail Spirits & Taphouse

Past Recipients

2022: Buddyz Pizzeria
2021: AREA Coffee
2019: Mundelein Community Bank

2018: McDonald’s-Mundelein
2017: TieMart, Inc.
2016: Mundelein Automotive, Inc.

2015: Design Insurance Brokers
2014: Thrivent Financial
2013: Tighthead Brewing Co.

2012: Taste of Paris
2011: PNC Bank-Mundelein
2010: ACE Hardware–Mundelein

2009: McDonald’s-Mundelein
2008: Graham Enterprise Inc., and MacLean-Fogg
2007: National City Bank

2006: Sysmex America, Inc.
2005: First Midwest Bank
2004: Century 21 Market Place, Ltd.
2003: ACE Hardware


Mundelein was extremely lucky to have Dr. Chester Ciecko move into their community in 1950. He arrived from Chicago full of hopes, dreams, and a strong commitment for giving back to his community and other parts of the world. Dr. Chester was a member of Santa Maria del Popolo Church, and he also taught CCD and religion to parishioners with special needs for 12 years.

Dr. Chester Ciecko was a member of the Mundelein Lions Club, and a past president of the club. He received the Melvin Jones Fellow Award for Humanitarian Services from Lions Club Int’l. He was married to Anna for 57 years and has 4 children, James, Charles and Peter Ciecko, Karen Ciecko Williams, and 10 grandchildren. A doctor of optometry, he collected thousands of glasses, recalibrated them and took them to locations such as Poland, Belize, Mexico, Jamaica, South America, and Central America. He also was a member of VOSH International (Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity). His goal was to eradicate blindness. Dr. Chester Ciecko was a graduate of Lane Tech, a Veteran of WWII and a man with a big heart.

This award acknowledges the effort of a special organization that has been an inspiration to others and to the community, and who has contributed their name and talent to Mundelein Community Connection.

2023 Winner: GLMV Chamber of Commerce

Past Recipients

2022: Mundelein Arts Commission
2021: Mundelein LGBT Alliance & Allies
2019: CERT

2018: The Kirk Players
2017: Old Number One
2016: Mundelein-Vernon Hills Rotary Club

2015: Mundelein Park District
2014: Mundelein Public Works
2013: The Medline Foundation

2012: Boy Scout Troop 198
2011: Historical Society of the Fort Hill Country
2010: Mundelein Fire Department

2009: Mundelein Police Department
2008: The GLMV Chamber of Commerce
2007: The Village of Mundelein

2006: District 120 Mundelein High School
2005: Mundelein Police Department
2004: Mundelein Public Works Department