The Annual Spirit of Swift Current & District Business Excellence Awards (SCBEX) were held yesterday and featured an air of extra flair for the event’s 25th anniversary.  

Hosted in the Living Sky Casino, the SCBEX Awards brought in owners of businesses of all sizes, non-profit organizations, and individuals who make big impacts in the community. These industrious figures were gathered to be recognized for their labours which have served to strengthen Southwest Saskatchewan.  

The Master of Ceremonies for the event was Karla Wiens, the CEO of the Swift Current and District Chamber of Commerce. 

“There's lots of what we will call legacy businesses that were recognized this evening,” stated Wiens. “It's a changing of the guard so to speak. It's great to see that these great foundations were laid many years ago and that other people are picking up the torch and carrying on.” 

The object of admiration was very different last night, as the 25th-anniversary award was a silver and white blown droplet of glass. Wiens mentioned that they chose the unique design because they felt it was celebrating this milestone in a different fashion. There were also more artistically designed awards on stage, as some new categories were created to further recognize the business community. 

“The two new ones this year were the emerging entrepreneur of the year and the employer of the Year award,” Wiens said. “To recognize the tenacity and guts that it takes for a younger person to start and succeed and carry on with business we thought was very relevant for our community. We have many wonderful success stories of younger entrepreneurs. To celebrate their success and then as well as our employers are hugely important. In a community such as this, they provide jobs for you and I and our neighbours and children. Without strong employers, we won't have jobs to attract new residents and keep our great community thriving.” 

The ceremony had over 270 people in attendance and had fine cuisine and a selection of beverages for the honoured attendees to enjoy. 

“For the original awards, there were 20 nominations,” explained Wiens. “We now have over 100, and without fail, all those nominations that come in are very well put together. There's some thought and consideration that people are putting forth who they feel is deserving of an award, and they're all deserving of awards, quite frankly. The recognition for our business community, whether that's for-profit, not-for-profit, or individuals, I think Swift Current and Southwest Saskatchewan are very fortunate and that we are very collaborative and supportive of each other. We don't hesitate to pat each other on the back when it's warranted.” 

Wiens said that this year's ceremony was particularly important, and reached a milestone for which the original organizing committee would be proud.

“We recognized the award winners in each of those 11 categories, but also the award sponsors in each of those award categories. Simply because an event like this is not possible without the immense support of many sponsors, and for our 25th anniversary we wanted to say thank you to them as well and have a memento to celebrate this occasion.” 

The following is a list of awards, winners, and sponsors. 

Member Business of the Year: W.W. Smith Insurance 
Sponsored by Saskatchewan Blue Cross 

Hall of Fame Inductee: S3 Group Ltd. 
Sponsored by the City of Swift Current, RM of Swift Current 

Not-for-Profit of the Year: Southwest Youth Emergency Shelter 
Sponsored by Stark & Marsh  

Start-up/New Business of the Year: Sunny Side Up Stationary Co. 
Sponsored by Innovation Federal Credit Union 

Small Business of the Year: Spoon & Bowl Bistro 
Sponsored by MNP 

Medium Business of the Year: Len’s Plumbing and Heating Ltd. 
Sponsored by S3 Group Ltd. 

Large Business of the Year: S3 Group Ltd. 
Sponsored by SaskTel 

Community Impact Award: Plewis Automotive 
Sponsored by WW Smith Insurance Ltd 

Employer of Persons Experiencing Disabilities Award: Canadian Tire 
Sponsored by Partners in Employment/SaskAbilities 

Employer of the Year Award: Stark & Marsh 
Sponsored by BDC – Business Development Bank of Canada 

Emerging Entrepreneur Award: Kai Haubrich 
Sponsored by Great Plains College 

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