Gary Weiner knows giving back to the community is as important as running a business.
His family’s Saxon Shoes has donated thousands of new shoes to needy school children over the years. The company’s stores in Short Pump Town Center in Henrico County and Spotsylvania Towne Centre near Fredericksburg also have collected shoes to distribute to needy adults.
And the retailer’s employees work with disabled and autistic students from Henrico to provide on-the-job training.
The company’s community efforts were a key reason why Saxon Shoes, founded in 1953, won the 2013 Impact Award from the Greater Richmond Chamber in the large-business category.
Holiday Barn Pet Resorts, a kennel, day camp and “spa” with two locations in the Richmond area, received an Impact Award in the small-business category.
The two awards, and other awards, were announced at the chamber’s annual ceremony at the Richmond Marriott Wednesday night.
The Impact Award recognizes local businesses that have made an impact on the region’s economy, and contributed to the community and to the lives of their employees through innovation in their industries.
“I was brought up in a family set on helping other people and doing the right thing,” said Weiner, president of Saxon Shoes and son of the company’s founders. “Those principles are good for longevity.”
For a second year, the chamber named winners in two categories — the large-business category, with more than 100 employees, and the small-business category.
Holiday Barn Pet Resorts, founded in 1972, was recognized in part for its community and workforce programs.
It donates time, space and training services to local humane societies. The company coordinates pet food and pet supply drives and contributes more than $30,000 annually to local nonprofit organizations.
Four other companies were finalists for the 2013 Impact Awards, which were presented by the accounting firm Cherry Bekaert LLP.
The finalists in the large-business category were home health care business Care Advantage Inc. and preschool provider Rainbow Station. Hardywood Park Craft Brewery and Richmond Flying Squirrels were the finalists in the small-business category.
Also during Wednesday night’s event, Southwest Airlines gave a $100 airfare voucher to each of the approximately 800 audience members, excluding elected and government officials. ***
The event also recognized the winners of the chamber’s inaugural Innovation Award, the HYPE Young Professional Workplace Awards and the chamber’s Business Council Awards:
• The Innovation Award winner was SkyFoundry LLC, a technology firm that provides businesses with software that monitors all their smart devices and looks for problems or inefficiencies:
The award recognizes an organization in the Richmond region that has been in business two to five years and has demonstrated “out of the box” thinking and growth, innovation and potential.
• The HYPE Young Professional Workplace Awards were given to the Keiter accounting firm in the large-business category; and The Frontier Project, a Shockoe Bottom consulting business, in the small-business category.
• The chamber’s Business Councils annually recognize outstanding companies each in Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico counties and in Richmond.
The 2013 winners by jurisdictions are: Networking Technologies + Support Inc. for Chesterfield; Hometown Realty for Hanover; Richmond International Airport for Henrico; and Hardywood Park Craft Brewery for Richmond.
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