Thirteen receive Partnership honors
From Staff Reports
Thirteen individuals and local businesses received the 2012 Blount Partnership Business Excellence Awards at the Clayton Center for the Arts Thursday evening.
More than 250 people attended the event emceed by radio personality Hallerin Hilton Hill.
The program included a year in review for the Partnership, which brought in 1,400 jobs and more than $116 million in capital investment over the past 20 months, according to a Partnership press release.
In addition, the chairs from July’s Chamber of Commerce membership event were recognized for bringing in 333 new members and making it the top event of its type held in Tennessee.
The entire room received one award — at least in spirit. When Michelle Hankes accepted the Nonprofit/Civic Service Organization of the Year Award on behalf of United Way of Blount County, the president and CEO said, “This is not my award, this is United Way’s award, and United Way is this room.”
After introducing her staff and acknowledging the board of directors by having them stand up, Hankes said, “If you have volunteered ever or donated ever to United Way, please stand up.”
Virtually everyone in the room came to their feet.
“There you are. Everybody’s there all the time,” she said.
Hill immediately recognized the unanimity of the support for United Way. He inspired a roar of laughter by adding as people still stood, “If you’ve taken a breath in the last 30 minutes ... I love United Way.”