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Last updated: August 23. 2013 4:12PM - 274 Views

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LIMA — The Lima/Allen County Chamber of Commerce once again will award reward excellence in its 11th annual award gala.



The chamber announced finalists Monday for the gala awards, which will have a red carpet theme this year, chamber program director Adah Ellerbrock said.



Tom Ahl, with Tom Ahl Family of Dealerships, will be the keynote speaker at the dinner, May 1 at UNOH Event Center. The elegant evening recognizes area businesses and leaders for their accomplishments, Ellerbrock said.



“I continue to be amazed by the businesses and people we have in this community,” Ellerbrock said. “I’m very proud of these finalists.”



Fifth Third Bank and Sheakley are major sponsors for the event. Tickets are $40 each or $280 for a table of eight for members. The are $45 each or $320 per table for nonmembers. Reservations can be made at 419-222-6045 or aellerbrock@limachamber.com.



The finalists this year are:



• Small business of year, sponsored by Citizens National Bank: Alter Ego Comics, Town & Country Flowers, All Service Glass



• Woman-owned business of the year, sponsored by The Union Bank Co.: Women’s Health for Life Inc., Kathy Ann’s Boutique, Ritz’s Intimately Yours



• Emerging Business of the Year, sponsored by The State Bank and Trust Co.: State Farm Insurance – Ben Anderson, Crankers Cycling, NOW Marketing Group



• Culturally Diverse Business of the Year, sponsored by St. Rita’s Medical Center: AFLAC – Marc Wright, Yamato Japanese Steakhouse



• Nonprofit of the Year, sponsored by Tom Ahl Family of Dealerships: Allen County Council on Aging, West Ohio Food Bank, Partnership for Violence Free Families



• Athena Award, sponsored by The Lima Auto Mall: Jim Unverferth, Karen Grothouse, Esther Baldridge.



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