PORT HAWKESBURY: The Strait area business community came together to celebrate business success and Global Entrepreneurship Week – the world’s largest celebration of job creators, innovators and business owners who turn dreams into economic growth.

Held at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre, the Fall Awards Dinner is hosted by the Strait Area Chamber of Commerce. The chamber’s fall dinner celebrates business success, and recognizes outstanding customer service, safety champions and new businesses.

Photos by Mary Hankey
The Excellence in Business award went to Polytech Products Ltd. Head of Regional Sales for Polytech, Reid Campbell (right), accepted the award from Chamber President, Richie Mann.

Top honours of the evening went to Polytech Products Ltd. with general manager Reid Campbell accepting the Excellence in Business Award. Polytech Products has been manufacturing high quality European-style tilt/turn windows in their Baddeck factory since 1988. Polytech’s customer base includes residential and commercial clients across Atlantic Canada, and they have made a concerted effort to adopt environmentally friendly manufacturing processes; excess PVC material is saved and repurposed for new window construction. Starting with just a few employees, they have grown to employ 13 people and opened a second sales office in the Burnside Industrial Park in Dartmouth. They are an excellent example of how small businesses can succeed in rural Cape Breton.

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Ashley Taylor (left), owner of Cutting Edge Studio and Boutique is pictured with Strait Area Chamber of Commerce president Richie Mann.

The Rising Star New Business Award was granted to Cutting Edge Studio and Boutique in Port Hawkesbury, and Martin Marietta Materials located in Mulgrave received the Export Achievement Award. Michelle MacNeil of the NSCC Strait Area Campus took home the Safety Champion Award and the Outstanding Customer Service Award went to Amanda Martell of St. Joseph’s Credit Union in Petit de Grat. Other accomplishments were recognized during the evening including businesses honoured for being in operation for 25 and 50 years or more. The Club 50 honorees included Strait Supplies and Norvon Enterprises, and the Club 25 inductees were C.J. D’Intino Engineering, and NuStar Energy LP.

Amanda Martell (third from the right), winner of the Outstanding Customer Service Award, was congratulated by her co-workers at St. Joseph’s Credit Union, along with the president of the Strait Area Chamber of Commerce, Richie Mann (far right).

“The early winter storm didn’t dampen spirits at the dinner,” said Amanda Mombourquette, executive director of the Strait Area Chamber of Commerce. “Entrepreneurship, hard work and innovation are very strong in the Strait area, which is evident from the award winners. We received a record number of nominations for the Rising Star New Business Award and that truly speaks to the entrepreneurial nature of our communities.”

The recipient of the Safety Champion Award, sponsored by the Workers Compensation Board of Nova Scotia, went to Michelle MacNeil, of the NSCC Strait Area Campus.

The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce is committed to recognizing business achievements, and to fostering business connections across the region.

The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce 2018 Fall Dinner and Awards Gala was sponsored by Port Hawkesbury Paper, Bearhead LNG, Nova Scotia Business Inc., BDC, InRich CBDC, the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia, the Municipality of the County of Richmond, the Cape Breton Partnership/REN, 1015 The Hawk, and Sound Source Pro Audio.

Carmen D’Intino from C. J. D’Intino Engineering Inc. was recognized at the Strait Area Chamber of Commerce 2018 Fall Dinner and Awards Celebration, having being in business in the Strait area for 25 years.

The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce is a not-for-profit business development organization that promotes, improves, and protects trade and commerce, and has done so for over 65 years; ensuring that the Strait area is one of the best regions in which to invest, live, work and conduct business.

The Strait Area Chamber of Commerce recognized Strait Supplies for having served the region for 50 years. Owner, Brian Bona (right) and Cathy Bona (middle) were on hand to accept the award from chamber president, Richie Mann.