Chamber Honors Excellence at ‘ECTys’ Celebration
Approximately 250 members of the community turned out for the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut’s Annual Meeting & ECTy Celebration on March 31, where 14 special awards were presented to area businesses and individuals.
“We are extremely grateful to these winners who have made significant contributions to the success and well-being of our community,” said Tony Sheridan, the President and CEO, of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut.
The 2021 Regional Chamber Award Winners are:
- Small Business of the Year: Aces High RV Park
- Business of the Year Award: Antonino Auto Group
- Volunteer of the Year Award: Ornet Hines
- New Business Award: The Tin Peddler
- Industry Innovator: Healthy PlanEat
- Community Revitalization Leader: Spark Makerspace
- Non-Profit of the Year: UCFS Healthcare
- Best Place to Work: Reliance Health
- Tourism Leader of the Year: Mystic Aquarium
- Dominion Clean Energy Award: Bell Power Systems
- Young Professionals of the Year: Wilmer Lambert and Kaiser Leuze
- Board of Directors Special Award: General Dynamics Electric Boat
There are two 2021 Cultural Coalition Award Winners. The Outstanding Arts & Cultural Organization winner went to ARTREACH and the Outstanding Business Supporter of Arts & Culture award was given to Cumulus Media, presented by Wendy Bury, Executive Director of the Cultural Coalition.
Before the awards celebration and plated three-course meal with a champagne toast and live music, the Chamber’s annual meeting was held, with a review of the Chamber budget and Chamber Foundation, and the election of the new Chamber Board of Directors.
“As we look back on 2021, our Annual Report tells a story of cautious optimism in the face of uncertainty due to the pandemic. However, thanks to board leadership we were able to ensure the smoothest possible recovery, and we are also pleased to bring back in-person events after a mandatory hiatus,” Sheridan said.
The 2021 Finance Report was discussed, which revealed there was a decline in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Pfizer grant assisted the Chamber financially as well as helped members in need. Thankfully, the Chamber ended the year with a positive outcome.
The Chamber Foundation Report indicated that in March 2021, there were 29 non-profits that were awarded grants totaling $87,700, and six high school students were given scholarships. In lieu of hosting their in-person annual fundraiser for two years in a row, The Chamber Foundation featured a marketing campaign “Every Month is a Holiday,” featuring different sponsors to raise money for specific causes each month, and a virtual auction in December.
The Board of Directors 2022 of the Chamber was also elected and Mary Ellen Jukoski, President of Three Rivers Community College, was elected as Board Chair of the Chamber, replacing Dr. Stephen Coan, President of Mystic Aquarium.