2014 Awards of Excellence winners are announced

It is with great pleasure that the Greater Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce announces the award recipients for the 2014 Awards of Excellence.  The 12th Annual awards program, named the Gem of the Valley Gala in more recent years, was held Saturday, January 31, 2015, at the Mirabeau Park Hotel in Spokane Valley to recognize business and community achievements. The winners, as voted by our membership, are:

Charity/Cultural Services: GSC Meals on Wheels

Community Caring Award: Toys for Tots

Entrepreneur Award: Barry Baker (for entrepreneurial vision in improving the community)

Small Business of the Year: Simply Northwest

Large Business of the Year: Mirabeau Park Hotel

The Chamber also recognized two individuals for their work within our organization. Dick Brantley was named Chamber Ambassador of the Year and John Guarisco as Chamber Volunteer of the Year.

Three of the school districts that serve our community chose Educators of the Year for recognition: Jennell McLaughlin, Central Valley School District; Jerry Call, East Valley School District; and Warryn Hansen, West Valley School District.

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the 2014 Harry E. Nelson Citizen of the Year Award to Marlene “Marti” Hollenback, community contributor and Dealer Principal/President of Dishman Dodge Ram Chrysler Jeep, who was chosen as this year’s recipient.

We want to thank the following sponsors for their support which makes this program possible:

Diamond Sponsors, Numerica and Modern Electric Water Co.

Sapphire Sponsor, Walmart

Emerald Sponsors, Greenstone Corporation, Graham Construction & Management Inc., and Spokane International Airport

Thank you, auction package donors:
  • Go Zags! GU MEN’S basketball tickets (rare find)– February 26th game vs. San Diego plus Executive Suite & dinner at Max (thank you, Ferguson and Mirabeau Park Hotel!)
  • O Canada Wine Tour donated by Tiki Shores Condominium Beach Resort, Wicked Wine Tours, & Salty’s Beach House Restaurant
  • Coeur d’Alene Casino Escape (thank you, Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel!)
  • Executive Chef-prepared gourmet dinner for 10 with specially-paired wine (thank you, C3 Chef Services and Rosauers!)
  • Bubbly Bid (thank you, Mirabeau Park Hotel!)

Thank you, Table Sponsors:

Avista, Baker Construction & Development, Banner Bank, Central Valley School District, Dishman Dodge, East Valley School District, Eastern Washington University, Fairmount Memorial Association, Inland Northwest Insurance, Itron, Lydig Construction, MarketPad.com, Mirabeau Park Hotel, Modern Electric Water Co., Precision Cutting Technologies, Valley Hospital, West Valley School District

Site Sponsor: Mirabeau Park Hotel

Entertainment Sponsor: Horizon Credit Union

Special acknowledgements:

Our deepest appreciation to the following individuals and businesses that helped make the Gem of the Valley Awards Gala a shining success:

Emcee:  Ty Barbery

Invocation:  Pastor Ian Robertson

Entertainment:  The Celestial Strings

Photographer:  Lisha Schultz

Auctioneer: Ben Small

Greeters & Cashiers: Charlotte Davila, Chuck and Cindy Esch, Elizabeth Nicesmith, Adina Stone, and Dusty Wetzler

Program Printing:  Staples