King County executive launches small business awards program

Nominations are being accepted now through local Chambers of Commerce and cities for the first King County Executive’s Small Business Awards to be held this October.

  • BY Wire Service
  • Monday, May 30, 2011 12:56am
  • Business

Nominations are being accepted now through local Chambers of Commerce and cities for the first King County Executive’s Small Business Awards to be held this October.

King County Executive Dow Constantine, in partnership with presenting sponsors Microsoft Corporation, KeyBank, enterpriseSeattle, the Workforce Development Council of Seattle – King County, and the Small Business Partners for Prosperity, launched the program May 20, according to a media release from Constantine’s office.

“I am proud of the entrepreneurial spirit in our region, and these awards are our way of recognizing worthy small businesses that are doing great things,” said Constantine. “I thank our event sponsors and partners for working collaboratively to make the upcoming inaugural awards a success.”

Twenty-one local chambers of commerce and cities are partnering with the county and event sponsors to nominate small businesses that qualify for awards in one of seven categories.

Nomination categories include:

  • Small Business of the Year
  • Minority Small Business of the Year
  • Woman Small Business of the Year
  • Exporting Small Business of the Year
  • Green/Sustainable Small Business of the Year
  • Workforce Development Small Business of the Year
  • Rural Small Business of the Year

“Last year KeyBank was ranked among the top 15 financial institutions in the nation for SBA lending,” said Rick Wirthlin, President of KeyBank Seattle-Cascades District. “This new awards program is yet another way we can support and recognize the good work being done by small businesses throughout our area.”

“Small businesses are a key economic engine that will drive forward our region and our state,” said Brad Smith, Microsoft general counsel and senior vice president, legal and corporate affairs. “Eighty percent of future job creation is predicted to come from small businesses. We are committed to their success and delighted to support these awards.”

Nominations will be accepted from King County chambers of commerce, cities, and business organizations through Friday, July 1. To be nominated, businesses must be in King County, have 50 employees or less, and have been in business for a minimum of three years.

Finalists will be announced Sept. 15. The awards will be presented at a ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 12 at the Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue.

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