The challenges of the last three years were put on the backburner on Saturday evening, February 12, as business owners and operators across the Mid Coast region celebrated their successes and achievements in the 2021 Insurance Advisernet MidCoast Business Awards.
Due to the ever present pandemic situation the awards were this year announced in a unique and COVID friendly way, by MC Jeremy Miller livestreamed via Facebook.
And, the winner was Taree Universities Campus (TUC), while Forster-based Clinink Cosmetic Tattooing was named runner-up business of the year.
Despite the disappointment of being forced to cancel a face-to-face gala event, MidCoast Business Awards organising committee members were please with the the eventual outcome.
Committee member, Kelly Gamblin said their goal to increase participation in the annual event was certainly achieved.
"It was widely supported across the Mid Coast region; it has grown."
The awards received entries from every corner of the region, from Tea Gardens to the foot of the Barringtons and north of Taree.
"We look forward to getting back to business for the next awards in 2023."
The purpose of the MidCoast Business Awards is to provide a platform for businesses to evaluate their aims and objectives, culminating in a great event which brings the Mid Coast business community together to recognise and celebrate their outstanding achievements.
Taree Universities Campus CEO, Donna Ballard was understandably chuffed and excited with the win.
"It was such a shame we couldn't be there in person to jump up and down on stage and hug and scream," Ms Ballard said.
"It means such a lot to us. We've only been going one year," she said.
The education facility also won the community services category.
"When I put the application in we went for community service, because we thought we are really doing a community service, trying to develop education and skills in the area.
So we are, in a way, more than just an education space, we're about the business link as well, so that Business of the Year recognition is nice.- Taree Universities Campus CEO, Donna Ballard
"But for us, to be recognised as a business of the year is exciting, because we are about the business of education and trying to connect students in with businesses in the area.
"So we are, in a way, more than just an education space, we're about the business link as well, so that business of the year recognition is nice.
"We are very focussed on connecting students with employers.
"We are getting so many enquiries from employers about wanting that middle management, or wanting people to join their accounting team, people who have got that business background.
"There's so much opportunity. It's not just students here, it's actually the employers as well. There's lovely matching and meshing that happens of people wanting to study that are matching skill sets that are in demand.
"We hope that this MidCoast Business Award will get our name out there further and wider and we will be more know as a place to come to study any course that you want to study.
"We do have partnerships with particular universities, but anyone can study any course online and we are here to assist, to make sure you finish the degree - that's the thing we really want to make sure happens."
Linda Titow from Clinink Cosmetic Tattooing was surprised when her business name was announced.
"It was just good being nominated," Ms Titow said.
"There were so many other wonderful businesses who had entered."
Ms Titow believed the award would give her business greater exposure and promote its unique offering.
"What we offer can be life changing for many people," she said.
Business excellence awards:
People's choice awards, which is determined by the business that received the most customer votes.
Major winner: Lumpy's Nursery and Landscape Yard.
Best start up:
Major Winner: Sunrise Home Care
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