Nominations forms for business awards now available

The Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce is planning on making its 10th-annual business awards banquet, which will take place Oct. 22 at the Rendez-Vous, the best-ever.
But what would a business awards gala be without winners, and now it is up to people of the district to nominate those deserving to walk down the red carpet and be in the spotlight that night.
Chamber office manager Dawn Booth said that nomination forms are out this week, and are available at the Chamber office (474 Scott St.) and at various locations around the district. They also should available on the Chamber’s website ( by next week.
The deadline to submit them is Sept. 30.
Booth noted there also will be a handful of new awards introduced this year, two of which—Business of the Decade and Lifetime Achievement—only will be given out at this year’s 10th anniversary gala.
The other two are Business Woman of the Year and one for honouring those who have taken measures to ensure their business is handicap-accessible.
In addition to the new ones, categories listed on the forms will include Business of the Year (1-15 employees), Business of the Year (16+ employees), Employee of the Year (private sector), Employee of the Year (not-for-profit), and Entrepreneur of the Year.
Rounding out the categories are the Northwest Training and Adjustment Board Award, Abitibi-Consolidated Safety Award (business and individual), Customer Service (business and individual), and the Tony Beyak Memorial Volunteer of the Year Award.
At last year’s gala, the Business of the Year Awards went to Camp Narrows (1-15 employees) and Cloverleaf Shop Easy Foods (16+ employees). Entrepreneur of the Year was Paul Brown of the Stratton-based Paul Brown Trucking.
Taking home Employee of the Year awards were Janice Tucker of the Fort Frances Clinic Dispensary (private sector) and Vik Nowak of Family and Children’s Services here (not-for-profit).
Glen Cymbalisty of Wal-Mart Canada Corp. and Edward Jones won the Customer Service awards (individual and business, respectively).
The Abitibi-Consolidated Safety Award (individual) was given to John Beaton of the Fort Frances Ambulance Service while the Alberton Volunteer Fire Department earned the award for business/employer.
The Employer Champion Award went to Riverside Health Care Facilities, Inc. while the Tony Beyak Memorial Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to Gary Rogozinski.
A total of 65 nominations were submitted last year, listing 55 different nominees.
As well, two people last year were named winners of the rarely-awarded James Paul Award, which is given to those who have made “an outstanding contribution” to the local Chamber of Commerce over the years.
The two winners were Kim Metke, owner of Pharmasave and the Fort Frances Clinic Dispensary, and Mel DeGagne, owner of Norfab Building Components.