More than 370 representatives from area businesses gathered at the Hollenbeck Bayley Conference Center on Thursday night as area businesses were honored for their success over the past year.
The Greater Springfield Chamber and Visitors Bureau hosted its annual meeting Thursday, along with a business expo that drew interest from about 40 area companies. The annual meeting, one of the chamber’s biggest events of the year, featured a keynote address from Scott Monroe, co-founder of Thirty-One Gifts. which employs about 300 workers in Springfield.
Monroe stressed the importance of providing a supportive environment for employees and identifying core values that can guide a business.
The chamber also honored Chuck Ingle with the Richard L. Kuss Lifetime Achievement Award. A former board chairman, Ingle was credited with bringing stability to the organization and developing programs such as Greater Springfield Moving Forward, which tries to create strategies to improve issues such as downtown development and student achievement in the city.
“Chuck has been my mentor, my leadership coach, my counselor and a very important father figure in my life,” said Mike McDorman, president of the chamber. “I have been more than blessed by knowing Chuck and Sally Ingle.”
The chamber also honored several local businesses, including Wallace and Turner, which was recognized as the Small Business of the Year. Konecranes won Business of the Year, while Texas Roadhouse won as Community Retailer/Restaurant of the Year.
Trisha Church, of the Foley Benefits Group LLC, was named Chamber Ambassador of the Year.