34th Annual Business Excellence Awards

 

The Kelowna Chamber salutes all Kelowna-area businesses and how they have rolled with the many punches thrown at them during 2021.  While we all had planned to be through the pandemic by this point in the year, we're not quite there yet.  That said, we're still seeing terrific business stories in our community: leaders, entrepreneurship, new ideas, innovation across many organizations and industries.  Our 2021 Business Excellence Awards will celebrate those accomplishments.  We have sixteen awards to give out this year, and the process begins now.

 

Nominations open Thursday September 9, leading up to the application process, judging, the announcement of finalists, the announcement in late November of Business Leader of the Year, and a gala awards ceremony, live and/or virtual, as the year draws to a close.

Our theme is "Rockin' Resilience" - and awards in 2021 will celebrate in particular those businesses which embody those traits: the ability to keep going, keep staff and customers engaged, keep the lights on, keep moving forward.

In light of recognizing excellence and resilience, we're honoured to be once again be joining our co-presenting sponsors Farris LLP and Interior Savings Credit Union to celebrate the exceptional business and community leaders within our community. As well, numerous other sponsoring organizations throughout the local business community have said "yes" to making this year's Awards possible. Thank you, all.

Since 1987, our Business Excellence Awards have presented nearly 275 awards to businesses and community leaders in Kelowna and the surrounding area. This program offers award recipients, finalists, and all nominees well-deserved recognition for their accomplishments as well as valuable publicity for their organization and Kelowna’s burgeoning reputation as a centre of excellence.

We were nominated for Small Business of the Year. We were introduced to 300+ members of the Chamber at the awards ceremony and our presence was greatly elevated to the general public. The experience turned out to be a great promotional tool for us. 

Sean MacMillan | Orthoquest Pedorthics

For sponsorship opportunities, contact Shane Osborne: shane@kelownachamber.org

 

Award Specific Criteria for 2021 Awards

  • Rising Star Business – Highlights those breakout businesses which have been in operation for only three years or less and have achieved above average success
  • Small Business – Open to businesses with 1-15 employees, and they must have been in business for a minimum of three years
  • Mid-sized Business – Open to businesses with 16-50 employees which has been in business more than three years                                  
  • Large Business – Open to established companies with 51+ employees
  • Not-for-profit Excellence– Goes to a society or community organization which has demonstrated significant social impact and innovation in its business practices. In reviewing this category our judges noted that all nominees were inspiring - demonstrating passion for their organizations and that they are all making notable contributions to our community.
  • Social Leadership – Recognizes a for-profit business that has demonstrated leadership and excellence in making a significant social impact in the community.
  • Marketing Campaign of the Year – Recognizes the outstanding creativity that goes into marketing unique products or services. Innovation, strategy, and effectiveness are all considerations during the judging process.
  • Arts & Entertainment – Goes to a business, organization, or a particular event that contributes to a vibrant community by celebrating arts, culture and/or heritage.
  • Technology Innovator – Goes to a business that has demonstrated creativity and innovation in adopting, developing, or utilizing new technology to advance their business interests and/or to have a positive impact on their customers.
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Recognizes a tenacious and successful entrepreneurial individual aged 40 or under. In reviewing this and other awards, the judges consider operational management, financial health, corporate social responsibility, marketing strategies, and HR policies.
  • Ethics in Business - This award is open to those businesses and organizations (profit or non-profit) which must be in good standing with BBB and must have a B or higher rating; however, BBB Accredited Business status is not a requirement for consideration.. 
  • Inclusive Workplace Award - Awarded to a business or organization which, through its leadership and efforts, has undertaken action to create and promote a diversified and inclusive workplace; a workplace in which individual differences and the contributions of all employees are recognized and valued, and is inclusive of all perspectives and groups, including but not limited to: age, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, social mobility, disability and gender. 
  • Excellence in Tourism – This award recognizes the impact of tourism on our local economy and the outright excellence of many of our attractions and venues.
  • Indigenous Business of the Year - NEW AWARD - This business has showcased the best of Indigenous (First Nations, Metis and Inuit) entrepreneurship and business savvy. This business is majority owned by an Indigenous person/s, community or organization. To be recognized this business must have distinguished itself for excellence, innovation, and customer service.
  • Environmental Impact - Awarded to a company whose business practices embrace innovation approaches and techniques which are preserving or enhancing the environment.
  • Excellence in Agriculture - Farming or food processing business that has distinguished itself and shown leadership by promoting the betterment of agriculture and/or food production in our community.
  • Business Leader of the Year - acclaimed by the Judging Panel - No nominations accepted for this Award

 


 

Congratulations to our 2020 Nominees:

Rising Star Business of the Year (less than 3 years)
  • Shambhu’s Spice House Cuisine of India - WINNER
  • Taste Advisor - FINALIST
  • You Are Collective - FINALIST
Small Business of the Year (1-15 employees)
  • DEW IT SOLUTIONS - FINALIST
  • portia-ella - WINNER
  • Twirling Umbrellas - FINALIST
Midsize Business of the Year (16-50 employees)
  • Kelowna Hyundai - FINALIST
  • Secure Rite Mobile Storage - WINNER
  • TKI Construction Ltd. - FINALIST
Large Business of the Year (51+ employees)
  • Anodyne Electronics Manufacturing Corp. - FINALIST
  • Current Taxi Ltd. - FINALIST
  • Highstreet Ventures Inc.- WINNER
Not-for-Profit Excellence Award
  • BC SPCA Kelowna Branch - FINALIST
  • The Bridge Youth & Family Services Society - WINNER
  • Childhood Connections - FINALIST
Social Leadership Award (for-profit)
  • BalAnce Well-Being Community Inc. - FINALIST
  • Kelowna Hyundai - FINALIST
  • Secure Rite Mobile Storage - WINNER
Marketing Campaign of the Year
  • Anodyne Electronics Manufacturing Corp. - FINALIST
  • Okanagan Bucketlist - WINNER
  • Okanagan Lifestyle Apparel - FINALIST
Arts & Entertainment Achievement Award
  • Kelowna Pride Society - WINNER
  • Studio9 School of the Arts - FINALIST
Technology Innovator of the Year
  • Hybrid Elevators - WINNER
  • Perfit Dental - FINALIST
  • Valens Company - FINALIST
Young Entrepreneur of the Year (under 40)
  • Jaclyn Robertson - Okanagan Lifestyle Apparel - FINALIST
  • Julie Michaud - portia-ella - FINALIST
  • Brandon Panopoulos - TKI Construction Ltd. - WINNER
Ethics in Business Award
  • Inspire Property Management Ltd - WINNER
  • Secure Rite Mobile Storage - FINALIST
  • TKI Construction Ltd. - FINALIST
Inclusive Workplace Award
  • Hampton Pools & Landscape - WINNER
  • Kelowna Pride Society - FINALIST
  • Mario’s Towing - FINALIST
Excellence in Tourism Award
  • Big White Ski Resort Ltd. - WINNER
  • Myra Canyon Ranch - FINALIST
  • Paynter’s Fruit Market - FINALIST

Thank you to our 2020 Sponsors:


 



Past Recipients

2019

  • Arts & Entertainment Achievement Award: Kelowna Museums Society
  • Marketing Campaign of the Year: Predator Ridge
  • Social Leadership Award: Boyd Autobody & Glass
  • Rising Star Business of the Year: Cannary Packaging
  • Young Entrepreneur Award: Tyler Robson of Valens GroWorks Corp. 
  • Not-for-Profit Excellence Award: Central Okanagan Community Food Bank
  • Excellence in Tourism: Kelowna Concierge
  • Micro Business of the Year: Serviss Wealth Management
  • Small Business of the Year: The Peacock Sheridan Group
  • Mid-size Business of the Year: Hergott Law
  • Large Business of the Year: Valens GroWorks Corp. 
  • Technology Innovator of the Year: Agents of Discovery
  • Business Leader of the Year: Jeff Stibbard - JDS Group

Video Profiles of Finalists

2018

  • Arts & Entertainment Achievement Award: New Vintage Theatre Company
  • Marketing Campaign of the Year: SK Form & Finish Inc.
  • Social Leadership Award: Refresh Financial
  • Rising Star Business of the Year: Start Fresh Kitchen
  • Young Entrepreneur Award: Chris & Addie Pafiolis/Sweetlegs Clothing Inc. 
  • Not-for-Profit Excellence Award: Kelowna Community Resources
  • Small Business of the Year: Faction Projects Inc.
  • Mid-size Business of the Year: Highstreet Ventures Inc.
  • Large Business of the Year: Strategic Aviation Services Ltd.
  • Technology Innovator of the Year: Vitalis Extraction Technology
  • Business Leader of the Year: Dale Wentworth - Wentworth Music

Video Profiles of Finalists

2017

  • Arts & Entertainment Achievement Award: Rotary Centre for the Arts
  • Marketing Campaign of the Year: CREW Marketing Partners
  • Excellence in Agriculture: BC Tree Fruits Cooperative
  • Rising Star Business of the Year: Current Taxi
  • Young Entrepreneur Award: Andrew Gaucher - GGroup & Catalyst Land Development
  • Social Impact Award: Volinspire
  • Small Business of the Year: Hybrid Elevator Inc.
  • Mid-size Business of the Year: Newcap Radio
  • Large Business of the Year: Northside Industries
  • Business Leader of the Year: Lane Merrifield - Wheelhouse Ventures

Video Profiles of Finalists

 

2016

  • Business Leader of the Year: Tony Stewart of Quails' Gate Okanagan
  • Social Entrepreneur Award: Two Hat Security
  • Distinction in Hospitality & Tourism Award: Gray Monk Estate Winery & Vineyards
  • Small Business of the Year: (1-10 employees) Highstreet Ventures Inc.
  • Rising Star Business of the Year: BNA Brewing Co. & Eatery
  • Marketer of the Year: Csek Creative
  • Mid-size Business of the Year: (11-50 employees) Diversified Rehabilitation Group
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year: Rachel Clarida of Hatch Interior Design Inc.
  • Technology/Innovation Award: WTFast
  • Large Business of the Year: (51+ employees) Sun-Rype Products
  • Sustainability Award: Evergreen Building Maintenance Inc.

Video Profiles of Finalists