WALLINGFORD — The Quinnipiac Chamber of Commerce will recognize seven local businesses during its 77th annual meeting and awards dinner Wednesday night.
The event takes place at The Farms Country Club in Wallingford, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. The keynote speaker will be Chris Berman, a longtime sportscaster for ESPN.
“When you have a company that has gone above and beyond, you should really be praising and recognizing them,” said Dee Prior-Nesti, executive director of the chamber. “Some companies are very humble … we want to make sure that they are acknowledged.”
Prior-Nesti said the companies being honored were chosen based on their excellence in business, as well as their contributions to the community. She said the chamber also puts an emphasis on employee-happiness and support for veterans and active military personnel.
Among the honorees is Area Cooperative Educational Services (ACES), which is being recognized for the Community Impact Award. The organization serves about 2,200 students, across 65 districts, with a wide variety of programs including adult and vocational, interdistrict, and professional development programs, as well as behavioral services for individuals on the autism spectrum.
“They just provide such great service for especially students with special needs,” Prior-Nesti said. “They go above and beyond.”
The Shining Star awards go to businesses that have demonstrated sustainability and excellence in business. This year, TD Bank earned the large company award, Calcagni Real Estate the mid-size award and ONE SOURCE Companies the small company award.
“All three of these companies give back to their communities and then some,” Prior-Nesti said.
The Veterans & Military Humanitarian Award goes to Albertus Magnus College, which was named the first Purple Heart School in the state earlier this year.
"The College’s selection by the Quinnipiac Chamber to receive the Veterans and Military Humanitarian Award celebrates service and our commitment to offering the best possible student experience for our veterans. We salute their service and admire the sacrifices they’ve made for our country,” said Albertus Magnus College President Dr. Marc M. Camille in a statement.
Albertus Magnus College is devoted to the pursuit of truth through its four pillars of study, prayer, community, and service, inspired by its Dominican heritage, the college said.
The Wallingford Emergency Shelter, a program of Columbus House, will be honored with the Non Profit of the Year Award for their service to the community, especially the underprivileged.
This year, the Heritage Award — which recognizes businesses around for 100 years — will go to Wallingford Buick-GMC, which opened in 1914 and has been continuously run by the same family since.