By Naomi Hatch
The Snowflake-Taylor Awards Dinner has been a very special evening for the business community for many years. This year the theme was Beauty and the Beast, making it even more special.
Just as dinner began the group was entertained by Gaston (David Bowman), the teapot (Jewell Busch) and, of course, Belle (Malorie Saline). Clint Burden provided the music for the program and the dance.
“We chose the classic tale of Beauty and the Beast as our theme for the 2012 Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet for two reasons,” said Chamber Executive Director Charlotte Hatch. “First, because the characters are so adorable, charming and fun…but more important is the second reason. Even as they were changed by circumstances beyond their control, they remained loyal to the man who had been their support, and now whose appearance and seeming actions had turned him into a beast.” Hatch said that in their hearts they knew that his transformation was temporary, and that love and faithfulness would eventually win.
She said that because of the love she had for her family, Belle went to the beast and showed him that life was good and that together they could do anything…“with love.”
Hatch went on to note that we are living in beastly times economically, stating, “This beastly situation has placed a veil of fear to hover over us, sending many of our friends and neighbors to spend their money elsewhere just to make ends meet.”
She noted how the beastly economy has hit the community again with the closing of the paper mill and other businesses, but that through all this turmoil there are some businesses and individuals that have continued to be the beauties of the community.
“Why?” she asked. “Because they love; plain and simply they love our home in these White Mountains,” and noted that they have encouraged everyone to live beyond the beastly times by “shopping locally and thinking globally, standing apart in the community as examples of leadership and foresight.”
Those are the individuals and businesses honored at the dinner.
“They have shown us that the beast is not who we are and together we are taming the beast,” said Hatch.
She thanked Frontier Communications for sponsoring the event and introduced winners of the awards, noting that all of the nominees can be proud of their accomplishments.
Winners included: Large Business of the Year, Larson Waste; Medium Business of the Year, Celebrations; and Small Business of the Year, Perfect Printz.
Non-Profit Business of the Year went to the Navajo County Advocacy Center.
The Appreciation Award for her generous and outgoing support to the chamber went to Bonnie Adams.
Charlotte Hatch presented the Executive Director’s Award in appreciation of all he did for the chamber, not only the Snowflake-Taylor Chamber, but all chambers in the White Mountains, to Buck Biddle.
The Shining Star Award was presented in appreciation of an individual for outstanding service to the community and went to Snowflake Parks and Recreation Director Don Camacho and Ernie Ortega of the Sweet Wheels Car Show.
JoAnne Gudarian, president of the Snowflake-Taylor Chamber, presented the President’s Award for outstanding service within the chamber and the community to Naomi Hatch.
The 2012 Business Man of the Year nominees were Joe Bjornn of State Farm Insurance, Nathan Hensley of Computer Technologies and Nolan Larson of Larson Waste. Larson and Hensley shared the honor.
The 2012 Business Woman of the Year nominees were Olivia Bentley of Silver Creek Flowers, Kimberlee Dahl of Golden Key Auto and Julie Hensley of Celebrations. The award went to Hensley.
Guderian presented her staff, Charlotte Hatch and Nancy Noble, with a bouquet from Silver Creek Flowers for all they do for the chamber.
She applauded all the small businesses and encouraged them to “keep up the hard work. Keep on plugging along. There is no better place to live than in this community.”
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By Naomi Hatch