By Richard Rourk
The Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce celebrated the very best of Unicoi County on Thursday, March 17, by announcing award recipients in various categories during its annual Best of Unicoi County dinner at the Army National Guard in Erwin.
According to Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Amanda Delp, the event was a huge success.
“We had a great turnout and it was so nice seeing everyone come together,” Delp said. Delp welcomed everyone to the in-person event, which had been affected by the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. “It feels like such a long time ago that we were able to stand on this stage and talk about the Chamber of Commerce and our members,” Delp said.
“The last few years have been challenging times for so many and we are so happy that we are fi nally able to come back together and celebrate the Chamber, celebrate you, our members and celebrate this great community in which we live,” she continued.
“Tonight is a night of celebration and a night of accomplishment, beginning with a wonderful dinner prepared by our great friends and Chamber member Fatz,” Delp said. We have a great program lined up including the presentation of the Best of Unicoi County Awards and the President’s Award. So I invite each of you to sit back and enjoy the evening that we have planned for you.”
Delp noted that the annual Best of Awards is one of her favorite events to host. “We had so many nominations and are so proud to be able to recognize these community leaders for their service,” Delp said. “It’s really a tough decision to make because there are so many that are worthy of these awards.”
Categories and winners were: Non-Profit of the Year, First Baptist Church of Erwin; Emergency Services Provider of the Year, Unicoi County Emergency Medical Services; Educator of the Year, Eleana Pate; Healthcare Business of the Year, Roller Pharmacy; Professional Services, Manuel, Donnelly, and Manuel – Attorneys at Law; New Business of the Year, The Groovy Smoothie; Small Business of the Year, Leslie Black Photography; Large Business of the Year, Bank of Tennessee; Distinguished Service to the Community, Paul Farnor; President’s Award, Erwin Public Works Department; and Award of Excellence, Unicoi County Hospital.
Delp explained that the awards could not be possible without the help of the Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors.
“Over the years, we have had many people throughout the community and the region serve on our board of directors,” Delp said. “Each brings a unique perspective to the Chamber. This year, we have such a great board that shares a deep passion for the Chamber and are engaging and inspiring. They freely give of their time and talents to oversee the mission and the direction of the Chamber. Their commitment doesn’t stop with just oversite, many roll up their sleeves and work right alongside the staff to make sure all of our events, just like this one, are premier events that our membership can be proud of.”
The 2022 Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce board of directors includes Tim Lingerfelt, president; Tracy Huff, board chairman; Todd Ambrose, treasurer; Leslie Black, secretary; Dustin Brown; Susan Chambers; Colleen Cox; Paula Edwards; Deanna Hardin; Shanna Hensley and Danny Venerable.