Chamber Hands Out Business Excellence Awards

March 01, 2011

Chamber Awards

Cornwall's brightest corporate stars were honoured this weekend at the Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards including the Business of the Year - Minimax Transportation, the Small Business of the Year - Robert J. Bourgon Construction, the Entrepreneur of the Year - Steward Bags, the Industry of the Year - SigmaPoint Technologies, the Lifetime Achievement - John and Valerie Markell, the Skills Development - St. Lawrence College, the Breakthrough Award - 3+ 1 Fundraising Committee, the Above and Beyond Award - Delaney Bus Lines.

The Circus-themed evening welcomed over 250 business and community leaders, who were treated to performances by acrobats as well as a wonderful meal at the NAV Centre.

"To all of the award winners, I offer my genuine congratulations", said Rick Shaver, Chamber President. "Each of them are outstanding representatives of their peers throughout our community. (They) reflect the excellence that pervades Cornwall's business sector and is a key reason why our economy continues to do well."

"I would also like to extend sincerest congratulations on behalf of the entire Chamber membership to Rod McLeod on being chosen Cornwall's 2010 Citizen of the Year. Mr. McLeod is an educator, athlete, and an individual who has positively impacted on literally thousands of our youth for more than 20 years. A worthy choice, Mr. McLeod epitomizes his fellow citizens whose selfless contributions have made Cornwall a better place to work and to live."

The following is a recap of the winners:

Business of the Year - Minimax Transportation
Minimax Transportation was named Business of the Year. The company has seen steady revenue growth and in 2010 invested over $1.3 million dollars in new trucks and equipment. The company (led by founder Paul Poirier and his sons Yves and Marc) recently celebrated their 20th anniversary.

Small Business of the Year - Robert J. Bourgon Construction
Robert J. Bourgon was named Small Business of the Year, in part due to a record year in terms of construction volume ($20.7M). The contractors have worked on several major projects in the City and region, including the Benson Centre, EMS Headquarters and Upper Canada Discovery Centre. Company president Dick Markell accepted the award.

Entrepreneur of the Year - Steward Bags
Local entrepreneurs Greg and Josee Bailey were also honoured at the awards ceremony. Their company, Steward Bags, distributes a line of re-usable cotton mesh produce bags. Growth has been steady, with placement in Eastern Ontario grocery stories and online sales.

Industry of the Year - SigmaPoint Technologies
SigmaPoint Technologies was named Industry of the Year. The contract electronics manufacturer expanded operations in 2010 with the introduction of new technology, new production lines and additional facilities. The company continues to hire and grow its workforce. Company president Dan Bergeron accepted the award.

Lifetime Achievement - John and Valerie Markell
John and Valerie Markell were honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award for over 3 decades of excellence. Their company, J.F. Markell Homes, continues to be active in the community, and have recently completed construction of a waterfront condominium building.

Skills Development - St. Lawrence College
The Skills Development Award was won by St. Lawrence College. The College is enjoying high enrollment due to the introduction of several popular new programs. The College is also reinvesting in the Cornwall campus with a $14 redevelopment project. College President Chris Whitaker and Cornwall Campus Dean Don Fairweather accepted the award.

Breakthrough Award - 3+ 1 Fundraising Committee
The Breakthrough Award went to the local committee that raised funds to offset the cost of the Benson Centre. The campaign began in January 2009 with a goal of $2 million, which has been surpassed by over $400,000 with contributions from over 200 businesses/groups/ people. Accepting the award on behalf of a large group of volunteers was Scott Lecky.

Above and Beyond Award - Delaney Bus Lines
The Above and Beyond Award went to Delaney Bus Lines for helping to raise Cornwall's profile through the development of a unique commuter bus featuring full colour graphics. The design of the bus, a passion of the late company founder Michael Delaney, recently placed first in a North American graphic design competition.

For more information on the 2011 Business Excellence Award Winners & the Citizen of the Year, please visit:

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