CLINTON — Clinton-area business owners and volunteers celebrated another successful season during the 142nd annual Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce Awards dinner.
“We have had a very full year at the chamber. We have had lots of activities, lots of events,” said Karen Vickers, from the Chamber Board, as she welcomed everyone to the annual meeting.
Rastrelli’s Tuscany Special Events Center was filled with members of the Clinton business community, as well as area politicians. Congressman Dave Loebsack, Iowa Sen. Rita Hart and Iowa Rep. Mary Wolfe attended the event as well as members of local government. Loebsack stepped up to the podium for a moment, thanking the Chamber for the invitation and promising to work to address issues important for the community.
“We’re going to continue to do what we can for you folks, in the community, but particularly in the business community and the small business community,” said Loebsack, adding that he understands small businesses are the real heart of the Clinton community.
The event highlighted the organization’s board members and many volunteers. Awards also were given to those who excelled in community leadership, small businesses, service and other achievements. The 2014 awardees included:
• The Karl Schmitz Memorial Ambassador Award — Andy Sokolovich, of Best Business Marketing/ Strengths Unleashed;
• Community Leader of the Year — Mary Connell, of Air Control;
• Small Business Person of the Year — Jude Golinvaux, of Vinnie’s Lounge;
•Outstanding Volunteer of the Year — Heather Mohler, of Clinton Community College; and
• Manager of the Year — Nikki Hardin of Data Dimensions.
Vickers also presented a Distinguished Service Award, which is not given every year. The award was created several years ago to recognize an individual who has a “lasting legacy of public service” and embodies positivity.
“It is a very special award that we hold and wait for that very special person to come,” Vickers said.