Marketing consultant Debbie A. Cannon, who founded DAC Enterprises, was named "Business Person of the Year" at the Hesperia Chamber of Commerce's annual awards ceremony on Tuesday.


Cannon, who also has served as director of resource development for High Desert Resource Network, was presented the award by Chris Ackerman, who currently serves as the Chamber's chairman of the board.


Cannon, of Oak Hills, has served on the chamber's board of directors and has been in other local organizations including the Victorville, Apple Valley and Hispanic chambers of commerce. She served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.


The Victorville-based C-Me Promotions, which is owned and operated by Mark and Claudine Austin, was named "Business of the Year." Mark Austin formerly served as the chamber's chairman.


Debra Ann Peterson, the broker/owner of Realty World Town and Country Partners, Inc. in Hesperia was named the Lillian King Award recipient for her enthusiasm and willingness to volunteer her time to the Chamber.


"She's always full of pep and vigor," said Ackerman, who works as marketing director of Sunset Hills Mortuary in Apple Valley.


However, the most emotional moment of the event at Courtyard Marriott in Hesperia came when the family of the late Richard Lupton received the first "Hesperia Legacy Award" on his behalf. Lupton, a retired firefighter who died last year after a lengthy battle of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, served on the Hesperia Recreation and Park District's board of directors.


"Last year was the first time he missed a Hesperia Days Parade," said Lupton's daughter Lisa, who received the award with Lupton's widow Kathy Lupton. "We thought of towing his hospital bed to the parade."


Mayor Thurston "Smitty" Smith, who joined in the presentation ceremony, fondly remembered Lupton, who he served with on the park board several years ago.


"'Do you support chickens?' Richard said when I was running for park board," Smith remembered. "And when I ran for City Council he said, 'Do you still support my chickens?'"


The Chamber also recognized committee members and the Hesperia Chamber Ambassadors for their devoted to the organization.


"Volunteers is what makes this chamber a success," Ackerman said. "It makes you feel warm and welcomed."