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Chamber hands out annual awards

DAILY NEWS STAFF REPORT
Summit Daily/Jim Morgan
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COPPER MOUNTAIN – The Summit Chamber kicked off its 25th anniversary celebration Friday morning with award presentations to nine individuals and businesses at its annual member breakfast.Tonight, the Chamber will host a gala at Copper Mountain Conference Center where Bernie Zurbriggen and Mike Kurth will receive Star’s Awards in recognition of their long-time service to the Chamber and the community.Receiving awards Friday morning were:• Volunteers of the year: Robert Bloch and Ken DeShaies• Diplomat of the year: Jamie Cripps

• Small business of the year: The Mastin Group• Entrepreneur of the year: Steaming Bean• Strategic partner of the year: Ralf Garrison• Regional business of the year: Summit Daily NewsInternational business of the year: Outlets at SilverthorneLifetime member award: Jamie Cripps

The Ben Fogle Award, named for one of the foundational members of the Chamber, was presented to Loren Stone, past Chamber president.Stone, who served as president in 2004 and 2005, gave an overview during the breakfast of Chamber initiatives during the past two years. During that time, the Chamber revamped its Experience the Summit Magazine; created a more interactive website; upgraded computers and software; developed strategic partnerships with key area businesses; and played a role in groups ranging from the I-70 Coalition to Leadership Summit.”It’s quite amazing where the Chamber has been and where it is today,” he said, noting that after several years of flirting with bankruptcy the community organization now shows a modest profit.Current president Eric Turner outlined several new initiatives, including the wellness-based community health insurance program that will debut this summer and an information-sharing program that will give chamber members “concrete information on economic trends in the county.” He also applauded the cooperative effort between area chambers, the towns and the county to develop a welcome portfolio.”This piece is not for visitors but for those wanting to move here or relocate their business here,” he said.Throughout his presentation Turner stressed the power of working cooperatively.

Wayne Brunetti, retired chairman and CEO of Xcel Energy, who lives in Summit County, was the keynote speaker. He applauded those who gave back to the community and said companies have an obligation to the communities where they do business.”You have no option,” he said. “You must give something back … what do you give back?”It comes in many forms and it goes beyond money,” noting that businesses and the individuals who operate businesses should be willing to volunteer and provide expertise.”He also said businesses should expect a return on the investment they make in the community.”You should expect something of value,” he said.The Friday breakfast was held at the Silverthorne Pavilion. Sponsors for the event included the Pavilion, the Summit Daily News, Krystal 93, KSMT, KTUN, KCMV and KSKE.


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