Nominations Accepted Through March 1st, 2024
For nearly 50 years, the St. Charles Regional Chamber has celebrated National Small Business Month, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.
As part of National Small Business Month, the St. Charles Regional Chamber and its community partners take the opportunity to highlight the impact of outstanding entrepreneurs, small business owners, and small businesses that lead the way in 6 key areas of business excellence. Judges comprised of previous Small Business of the Year recipients blindly review and score applications based on Business Growth, Management & Human Capital, Community Involvement, Marketing, Intangible Considerations, & The Why. Nominations are narrowed down to three Finalists. The Finalists are recognized and the award recipient is named at the Small Business of the Year Awards Luncheon.
The 2024 Small Business of the Year Awards Luncheon will be held on Wednesday, May 15th from 11:00am - 1:00pm at the St. Charles Convention Center.
6 Key Areas of Business Excellence
The growth of small businesses plays a vital role in our community through its positive economic, social, and cultural impact. Describe your company's vision and any objectives set for the upcoming two years. Does your company have strategic plans to extend its reach beyond the current geographic market. How has technology influenced and reshaped your business operations?
Management & Human Capital
Small business management and nurturing human capital are pivotal for laying the groundwork for growth, fostering innovation, maintaining a competitive edge, and building a robust foundation for long-term success. Reflect on a significant challenge or obstacle your company encountered and detail the strategies used to overcome it. What methods does your business use to recruit, retain, recognize, and incentivize your employees? Are there any aspects of your business management that significantly contribute to your company's success and growth?
Businesses have a social responsibility to give back to the community that supports them. This involvement creates a supportive environment, builds trust, attracts and retains talent, and stimulates economic growth. How does your business approach and encourage employee engagement in community activities? Describe the impact of your community involvement, whether through collaborations with local chambers, religious institutions, service organizations, youth groups like scouts, parent-teacher associations, etc., on the overall success and growth of your business.
Marketing is not just about selling products or services. It's about creating meaningful connections, building relationships, and establishing a brand presence that resonates with the target audience. Detail the strategies your company employs to differentiate itself from competitors in the market. Highlight the unique elements or approaches within your marketing strategy that set your brand apart. What methods do you use to adapt to market changes and maximize your ROI?
Intangible considerations encompass various non-financial aspects that contribute to its success. While difficult to quantify, these intangibles can impact a small business's resilience, reputation, and ability to thrive in competitive markets. Explain the measures taken by your company to actively promote and foster diversity in your workforce. Detail your company's commitment to environmental sustainability and any initiatives taken to minimize environmental impact. What other intangible aspects, perhaps related to leadership, culture, innovation, or ethical practices, play a meaningful role in shaping your company's identity?
When aligned with a strong purpose or passion, a small business can leverage this strong foundation to fuel its growth and sustainability. What is the purpose or passion that fuels your business? Share details about your business that exemplify its exceptional qualities. Highlight achievements, distinctive qualities, and contributions that distinguish your company as a standout in your industry or community. And finally, what sets your business apart and makes it the ideal choice for this year's Small Business of the Year Award?
Community Partner Awards
The City of St. Charles
The Grow St. Charles Award is presented by Mayor Dan Borgemeyer to a City of St. Charles Business that exceeds industry standards in innovation, community, employment, and environmental efforts.
The City of St. Peters
2024 Small Business of the Year Awards Luncheon Sponsors
When you sponsor an event of the St. Charles Regional Chamber, you not only gain exposure to a targeted audience of fellow businesses, future customers, and influential community leaders, you also support the many efforts of your Chamber. Sponsorships allow for the continuation of advocacy efforts, member benefits and services, networking opportunities, workforce development, and community support.
The GOLD SPONSORSHIP is exclusive and includes six tickets to the awards luncheon; your business logo featured on stage banner; your business logo displayed and linked on the website, tagged on social media, and included in e-mails; and your business logo printed in the event program. Plus, a representative from your company can address attendees about your business for up to three minutes, and will be included in the presentation of the Small Business of the Year Award to the winner.
The SILVER SPONSORSHIP is limited and includes four tickets to the awards luncheon; your business logo featured on stage banner; your business logo displayed and linked on the website, tagged on social media, and included in e-mails; and your business logo printed in the event program.
The TABLE SPONSORSHIP includes two tickets to the awards luncheon; your business logo displayed and linked on the website; and your business logo printed in the event program. Plus, your business logo will be displayed on a Table Tent at the Small Business of the Year Awards Luncheon.
2023 Small Business of the Year Highlights
Past Award Recipients
2014 Cliff Heitmann, Bax Engineering, Co., Inc.
2013 Bryan Jefferson, The SOHO Shop
2012 Sherry Gibson, Gibson Printing, Inc.
2011 Merle Schneider, SCHNEIDER Real Estate
2010 Wendy Black, Main Street Gym
2009 Joe Crenshaw, New Frontier Bank
2008 Dale Poslosky & Mitch Stern, Modern Business Interiors
2007 Tom Wapelhorst, Walters Jewelry, Inc.
2006 Susan Berthold, Remington’s
2005 Phil White, Telcom Services Installation (TSI, Inc.)
2004 Richard Sacks, The Sacks Group, Inc.
2003 Curt Dreyer, Bi-State Fire Protection Corporation
2002 Ed Pundmann, Pundmann Ford
2001 Hyatt Bangert, MB Properties, Inc. and Millstone Bangert, Inc.
2000 Tom & Holly Gillette, Parkview Gardens Florist & Greenhouses
1999 Eric Stegemann, Stegton Regency Banquet & Conference Center
1998 Tom Hughes, T. R. Hughes, Inc.
1997 James Rau, The Centennial Bank
1996 Bob Kirkwood, Lewis & Clark Restaurant and Trailhead Brewing Co.
1995 Jerry Kelly, Jerry Kelly Heating & Air Conditioning
1994 Jim Henry, R.C. Wilson
1993 Ernie W. Dempsey, Pio’s Restaurant
1992 Maurice Thro, Thro’s Clothing
1991 Elsie Long & Doris Altmansberger, A & L Travel
1990 Roy Kohrs, Mid-Towne IGA
1989 Joe Daues, ISU/St. Charles Insurance Agency
1988 Ann Watkins-Hazelwood, Patches, Etc.
1987 Harold Bax, Bax Engineering Co., Inc.
1986 Quince Parker, St. Charles Metal Finishing
1985 David Baue, Baue Funeral Homes
1984 Dean Wilcoxen, Wilcoxen Office Supply
1983 Melba O’Connell Brickner, Cave Springs Travel Co.
1982 Walter Rogalski, Tool Craft Machine & Tool Co.