The Prince George Chamber of Commerce rolled out the red carpet for its members Saturday night and busy businesswoman MaryAnne Arcand was crowned queen of the crop.
Arcand - whose extensive resume currently includes being executive director of the Central Interior Logging Association, president of the Rotary Club of Prince George and director of boards for the Trucking Safety Council of BC and BC Small Business Roundtable - was awarded Businessperson of the Year at the Chamber's annual Business Excellence Awards.
That prize goes to someone who has a history of significant contribution to the community and is recognized for outstanding achievement in the business world.
More than 300 people attended the Oscar-themed ceremony at Coast Inn of the North, hosted by professional comedian Gery Schubert as his alter ego Rene Mauve Toupe.
Arcand's win was one of 10 for area businesses and individuals. This was streamlined from the 15 awards passed out in previous years.
"We restructured the Business Excellence Awards this year, decreasing the number of awards from 15 to 10 which really worked to deepen the pool of nominees in each category," explained Chamber CEO Jennifer Brandle-McCall.
The night's other winners were:
n New Entrepreneur of the Year: Eoin Foley of Nancy O's
n Corporate Citizen of the Year: Integris Credit Union
n Micro Business of the Year: Green Mobile Veterinary Services
n Service Excellence Award: Splash Media Group Inc.
n Environmental Leadership Award: The Salvation Army
n Community Impact Award: Prince George and District Elizabeth Fry Society
n Outstanding Corporate Culture Award: Costco Wholesale
n Tourism Impact Award: World Baseball Challenge Society
n Business of the Year: Cheiftan Auto Parts Ltd.
According to Chamber president Bill McGill, a record number of votes from Chamber of Commerce members decided the 2012 winners.
"Engagement is obviously high and the word is out: Prince George is a great place to do business," McGill said.