Lima Chamber recognizes businesses/individuals at annual gala

·2 min read

Jun. 10—LIMA — The Lima/Allen County Chamber of Commerce recognized several local businesses and individuals for their leadership skills at the 19th annual Awards Gala on Wednesday night at the University of Northwestern Ohio Event Center.

"We give out awards to honor them and appreciate them for all they do," said Jed Metzger, president of the Lima/Allen County Chamber of Commerce.

Metzger says that besides recipients getting a small plaque, the honors that go along with receiving the awards are pretty special.

"It's more so people honor you and appreciate you. It drives business to their businesses but more importantly, it's just a recognition that they work so hard to achieve their goal and to basically serve others and we're just so excited we can honor any of our small businesses," Metzger said.

Kari Taylor, who won the Young Leader award, is executive director/counselor for Cornerstone of Hope, Lima. Her efforts to meet the needs of mental health services in the Lima community was recognized by the chamber. Her staff has grown to 11 people and they see more than 90 clients a week.

"It's amazing how I feel so blessed to be equipped by my Heavenly Father for the guidance he gives me for my everyday living by an amazing group of staff that I get to work with on an everyday basis, that I get to serve with in our community," Taylor said.

Total Revolution Training Facility, which won in the Emerging Business category, is owned by Jessy Austin. The business has grown by 50% in clients over the past year and income is up over 400% for the 3rd and 4th quarters of 2020.

Sara's Sweets is owned by Sara Anderson, who started her business in April of 2012 baking cupcakes from home. She expanded to a brick-and-mortar store on Eastown Road in 2015. Her business was deemed the best Woman Owned business.

St. Marks Resource Center, which won in the Non-Profit category, is run by Jessie Roark out of St. Mark's United Methodist Church on North Metcalf Street in Lima.

Roark opened the center in 2014 and helps people with food, clothing and assistance with their utility bills.

Kathy Keller won the Lima Chamber's Athena Award.

Keller is district director of the Ohio Small Business Development Center at Rhodes State College and was previously executive director of the Wapakoneta Area Chamber of Commerce for a decade.

Hoffman Analytic, owned by John Hoffman and Marcy Bolek, won in the Small Business Category. The business is a full-service environmental laboratory specializing in analyses on consuming water, wastewater and stable and dangerous waste.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.