The Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and the Maui Chamber of Commerce are once again honoring small businesses for their contributions to the community. Any small business that has 100 or fewer employees, and has had a Hawaii General Excise Tax license for no less than two, is eligible the 2015 Annual Mayor’s Small Business Awards.
Nominations are now being accepted for six award categories: Exceptional Small Business of the Year (10 or fewer employees); Exceptional Small Business of the Year (11 to 35 employees); Exceptional Small Business of the Year (36 to 100 employees); Outstanding Non-Profit Business (100 or fewer employees); Young Small Business Person of the Year (under age 40 as of Feb. 26, 2015); and Lifetime Achievement Award (for any individual doing business in Maui County for more than 20 years; no employee size limitation).
In addition to the employee and tax license qualifications, criteria include demonstrating business leadership in a changing economic environment, creating a quality work environment for employees, exhibiting the aloha spirit and exemplary customer service, developing partnerships with other sectors of the community, and demonstrating other exceptional qualities or traits.
“Small businesses are the true job generators in our community, and they risk a great deal to open their doors, create jobs, grow and stimulate our economy,” said Mayor Alan Arakawa. “Maui County is fortunate to have many successful small businesses that are known for their entrepreneurial spirit, innovation and ingenuity. I look forward to honoring them through these awards and to sharing their resilience and resourcefulness with others as shining examples of the strength of our community.”
Completed nomination packets must be received at the Maui County Business Resource Center at Maui Mall on or before 12:00 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 6, 2015; only those entries received on or before the deadline will be considered. Submissions must include the nomination form, nomination criteria form, one typewritten letter of recommendation from other sources, and a high resolution (minimum 300 dpi) digital photograph of the nominee. No self or employer nominations will be accepted.
Finalists and winners will be honored at an awards dinner on Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015, at the Waikapu Ballroom of the King Kamehameha Golf Club.
Nomination forms are available online at Mauicounty.gov/MCBRC and Mauichamber.com. Paper copies may be picked up at the Maui County Business Resource Center at Maui Mall; the Maui Chamber of Commerce; and American Savings Bank, Bank of Hawaii, Central Pacific Bank, and First Hawaiian Bank branches.
Chamber President Pamela Tumpap said small business that are still standing after the economic changes in the past few years should be praised. “We look forward to giving them well-deserved credit and honoring their tremendous accomplishments and investment in our community with Mayor Arakawa and his team,” Tumpap said. Small businesses are the heart of our community, she added.
For more information about nominations, additional details on available sponsorships or event ticket purchases, please contact the Maui County Business Resource Center at 808-873-8247 or the Maui Chamber of Commerce at 808-244-0081.
Photo of Betty Ford’s 1929 bowling trophy: Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library/Wikimedia Commons