More nominees than ever before are being honored at the fifth-annual Art of Achievement awards recognizing outstanding service by Flint and Genesee County businesses, workers, and professionals.
The Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce received another record-breaking number of nominations for its annual awards event. Last year, it received nominations for 40 businesses and 70 individuals — more than doubling the number of nominations from the previous year. This year, the number of nominations skyrocketed again with nearly 60 business and 110 individuals nominated by their peers for recognition.
From the nominees, 10 awards and eight special honors will be given by the chamber and the Flint & Genesee Convention and Visitors Bureau. The winners will be announced at a sold-out event Nov. 8 at the Flint Institute of Arts. Here are the nominees:
- CEO Business Award: McLaren Flint, STAT, Emergency Medical Services and Whaley Children’s Center
- Small Business Award: Cork on Saginaw, Destinations To Travel, Gaines Jewelers, Genesee Valley Physical Therapy, GoodBoy Clothing, Grossi Dental and Wellness, Knob Hill Bed & Breakfast, Jan’s Professional Dry Cleaners, McFarlan Home, McFarlan Villages, Park Place Hair Studio, Peerless Mattress Co., Rayburn Real Estate, ReMax Edge/Ryan Eshoo, Sedgwick + Ferweda Architects, Spud Software, Stanley’s Moving, and The Good Beans Café
- Minority Owned Business Award: Artistic Visions Enterprise, Eight Ten Nail Bar, Harambee Wellness, Sheldon T. Banks, Spectacular Spudz, The Cookie Jar, WT Stevens
- Nonprofit Impact Award: Alzheimer Association-Greater Michigan Chapter Flint Office, Communities First Inc., Ele’s Place, Ennis Center for Children, Faith Foundations Resources, Flint & Genesee Literacy Network, McFarlan Charitable Corp., National Alliance on Mental Illness Genesee Co., Odyssey House, Re Connections, The Church of the Holy Family-Grand Blanc, Community Foundation of Greater Flint, The Disability Network, University of Michigan-Flint Office of University Outreach, Valley Area Agency on Aging, Voices for Children Advocacy Center (Formerly Weiss Child Advocacy Center), Wellness Services, Young Life Genesee County, and Zonta Club of Flint
- Young Professional Leader Award: Brittney Carmichael, Claudnyse Holloman, DeWaun Robinson, Douglas Lobdell, Elyse Jurvelin, Joseph G. Mounger, Kalita McClure, Kurt Neiswender, Nancy Galant, and Noelle Kennedy
- Claire M. White Award, honoring a woman working for the betterment of Flint & Genesee in community, career or someone else’s life: Amy Krug, Ashoka Rao, Cathy Gentry, Crystal Pepperdine, Debra Morgan, Susan Borrego, Wendy Ringo, Erica Thrash-Sall, Heather Kale, Jessyca Matthews, Karen West, Kenyetta Dotson, Mary Flynn, Shannon Bonadurer, Tiffany J. Quinn
The awards also include several categories dedicated specifically to the hospitality industry. Here are those awards and nominees:
- Hotel of the Year: Baymont Inn & Suites, Best Western Plus Flint Airport Inn & Suites, Courtyard Flint/Grand Blanc, Hampton Inn & Suites Flint/Grand Blanc, Holiday Inn Flint-Grand Blanc Area, Knights Inn Flint, Knob Hill Bed & Breakfast, and Quality Inn Grand Blanc
- Restaurant of the Year: Blondie’s Food & Spirits, Cork on Saginaw, Krystal Jo’s Diner, and The Lunch Studio
- Frontline Ambassador Award, honoring a hotel hospitality worker: Baymont Inn & Suites (Sarah McWhirter, Elias Najjar, Jessica Poppenfuse, Celia Vela, Juliana Zuraqiat), Best Western Flint Airport Inn & Suites (Jeanette Anderson, Diana Baricska, Shuronda Brown, Andy Charles, Rebecca Fortune, Matthew Hensel, Maryanne Harden, Avante Hatter, Ronnica Jones, Damon Kelso, Elizabeth Morris, Mykal Oyler, Kayla Simmons, Kenisha Spencer, Jessica VanDeMark, Rhonda Williams), Courtyard Flint/Grand Blanc (Chelsea Alm-Shangi, Jazzmyn Blackwell, Heather Coon, Jacob Hoover, Katie Koenig, Dawn Lynch, Khalilah Robinson, Tamieka Tucker, Kay Walker, Linze Wilkerson, Jeff Woody, Deonna Wynn), Hampton Inn & Suites Flint/Grand Blanc (Breanna Bettencourt, Marie Bracey, Geraldine Geske, Ethan Irish, Ramona Johnson, Megan Mannor, Fran McGinnis, Lois Miller, Twan Roland), Holiday Inn Flint-Grand Blanc Area (Nick Anderson, Sheryl Champine, Katie Hinman, Christina Kincaid, Mary Kramer, Krista Mayhew, Tony Meyer, Tammy Ranaldi, Erica Smalls), Knights Inn-Flint (Melissa Lewis, Rhonda Myers, Tacarra Sanders, Jay Wilcox) Knob Hill Bed & Breakfast (Allan Griggs, Diana Phillips), Quality Inn Grand Blanc (Dana Chaney, Dominique Cobbin, Amanda Green, Christopher Kellogg, Holly Rosser, Sheila Williams, Traci Wing), Residence Inn Flint-Grand Blanc (Breanna Britt), Rodeway Inn Airport (Michelle Barr), and Wingate by Wyndham Flint/Grand Blanc (Ty Toles).
- Hospitality Ambassador Award, honoring non-hotel customer service: Launa Collins, UM-Flint; Shanique Collins, J. Porter’s; Lilie Eckman, UM-Flint; Jack Johnson, UM-Flint; Savanna Lacey, J. Porter’s; Shannon Leach, Cork on Saginaw; Rodney Lontine, Flint Institute of Music; Nate Lundt, UM-Flint; Lindsay Miller, Cork on Saginaw; Amy Nason, The Lunch Studio; Justin Nuveman, UM-Flint; Crystal Quaderer, UM-Flint; Darci Racette, Cork on Saginaw; Ann Reith, Cork on Saginaw; John Saites, Churchill’s Food & Spirits; Scott Sassack, Great Harvest Bread Company; Drew Thornton, Cork on Saginaw; and Bobby Tidwell, Hoffman’s Deco Deli & Café
The Chamber also will present special honors for Certified Tourism Ambassador of the Year, Community Champion Award, Economic Development Project of the Year, Entertainment Venue of the Year, Gloria DeHart Award, Robert P. Gerholz Award, Art Hurand Award, and the Charles Stewart Mott Award.