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Business Excellence Awards

2017 Business Excellence Awards

October, 24 2017

Nominations are now OPEN. 

Nominations close September 15, 2017


Join us at the Awards Gala on October 24 at the Rusty Edge. 

Sponsored in part by:


Super 8 Fernie

East Kootenay Community Credit Union

ISL Engineering


Tickets available: 

Early-bird pricing - $75
After October 14 - $99

Click here for more registration details. 


2017 Community and Business Awards Criteria

CITIZEN OF THE YEAR - Sponored by City of Fernie
no nomination package required, nominees judged by awards committee, no finalist – winner invited to awards gala.

  • Resident of Fernie for two or more years
  • Leadership in multiple roles as demonstrated through business and/or volunteer experience
  • Has improved quality of life in Fernie

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR - Sponsored by The Free Press
no nomination package required, nominees judged by awards committee, no finalist – winner invited to awards gala.

  • Commitment to volunteerism in Fernie and area demonstrated through volunteer hours
  • Demonstrated support to multiple organizations and activities

SPIRIT OF FERNIE - Sponsored by Isosceles Business Systems

  • A not-for-profit organization
  • Contribution to the economic, social and/or cultural well-being of Fernie
  • High level programming and or services to stakeholders
  • Effective and efficient management

ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR - Sponsored by Community Futures East Kootenay

  • Strong adherence to business ethics as demonstrated through company policies and business practices
  • Innovation and leadership as demonstrated through marketing, product development, and/or customer service
  • Active community involvement as demonstrated through organization memberships and/or community sponsorships.

NEW BUSINESS OF THE YEAR - Sponsored by The Summit Fund, Fernie Alpine Resort

  • In business less the two years
  • Strong support to the Fernie business community
  • Strong commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship


  • Based on online ranking from Expedia, Yelp, and Facebook
  • Innovation of products or services to create a customer experience


  • Marketing creativity that has resulted in more visitors to Fernie, examples to be provided
  • Demonstrated support to the tourism industry in Fernie


  • Demonstrated year after year growth and innovation

TEAM OF THE YEAR AWARD - Sponsored by EK Employment

  • Nominated by companies to recognize a work team or department that has gone above and beyond in increasing sales, ensuring project success, or creating innovative business solutions.

EMPLOYER OF THE YEAR AWARD - Sponsored by College of the Rockies

  • Exceptional commitment to its employees demonstrated through job creation, training and support, recognition and rewards, employee health and wellness and professional development.
  • Must be a member of Fernie Chamber of Commerce in good standing

CHAMBER BUSINESS EXCELLENCE - Sponsored by Fernie Chamber of Commerce

  • Commitment to Fernie Chamber of Commerce demonstrated through volunteerism, sponsorship, and advocacy
  • Positive business growth
  • Member of Fernie Chamber of Commerce in good standing

PEOPLES’ CHOICE AWARD - Sponsored by Rockies Law Corporation

  • Nominated for any of the above categories

Most votes as collected through social media, online survey ballots, and ballot boxes. After finalists have been announced.

COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP AWARD - sponsored by Best Western Plus Fernie Mountain Lodge

  • Community impact through leadership, philanthropy, volunteerism, and vision
  • Community support through organization memberships
  • Industry leader shown through industry or professional association membership
  • Member of the Fernie Chamber of Commerce in good standing


CHAMBER BUSINESS LEGACY AWARD - Sponsored by Western Financial Group

  • Can be an individual or business
  • Evidence of over ten years business operations, may not currently be in operation
  • Impact on the community demonstrated through organization support and sponsorship
  • Has shown business support through Chamber membership and Chamber volunteerism (e.g. board of directors volunteer)
  • Nominated and selected by the Chamber Board of Directors


About our Key-note Speaker

We are excited to welcome Dan Pontefract as this year's keynote speaker. 

Dan is the author of FLAT ARMY: Creating a Connected and Engaged Organization and THE PURPOSE EFFECT: Building Meaning in Yourself, Your Role, and Your Organization. He is a renowned speaker and has presented at multiple TED events and writes for Forbes, Harvard Business Review, Psychology Today and The Huffington Post.

About the 2016 Awards

On Friday, October 21, 2016, 150 plus filled the ballroom at the Fernie Best Western to celebrate the best in Fernie and announced the winners for the 2016 Community and Business Excellence Awards sponsored by CanAus Coal Limited. The evening started with welcomes from MP Wayne Stetski, Mayor Mary Giuliano, and Chamber President Sheila Byers.

Kelsey Ramsden, 2012 and 2013 female entrepreneur of the year, shared an inspiring message about Risk, the other four letter word. She inspired the audience to push through those little things holding you back. Following Ramsden key note, the awards were presented.

And the 2016 winners are:

Citizen of the Year, sponsored by City of Fernie

Laura Nelson

Volunteer of the Year, sponsored by the Free Press

Karen Tse and Graeme Nunn

Spirit of Fernie, sponsored by Best Western Plus Fernie Mountain Lodge

Outdoor Connections

Community Tourism Achievement, sponsored by Tourism Fernie

Fernie RV Resort             

Outstanding Customer Service, sponsored by Rockies Law Corporation

Super 8 Fernie

New Business of the Year, sponsored by Majic, Purdy Law

Kettle Black Bartending

Entrepreneur of the Year, sponsored by Community Futures East Kootenay

Marsha Churchill             

Team of the Year, sponsored by EK Employment

Mow and Snow - Landscape Team          

Employer of the Year, sponsored by College of the Rockies

A tie this year -

Ann's Your Independent Grocer              

Super 8 Fernie  

Fernie Business of the Year, sponsored by CanAus

Isosceles Business Systems        

People’s Choice Award, sponsored by Healing Hollow

Three Sister’s Day Spa

Chamber Business Excellence, sponsored by Fernie Chamber of Commerce

Capasiti Consulting         

Community Leadership Award, sponsored by Finning Canada

Spa 901

Chamber Legacy Award, sponsored by Fernie Chamber of Commerce

Evelyn Cutts

The Chamber of Commerce thanks the many businesses and individuals who helped organize and sponsor these awards including CanAus Coal Limited, Imagine Kootenay, Teck, Super 8 Fernie, East Kootenay Community Credit Union, FAR Summit Fund, Bridge Bistro, Island Lake Lodge, Nufloors, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Isosceles Business Systems, Castle on First, Soar Cycle Studio, Fernie Brewing Company, and Fernie Fix.

Congratulations to the finalists and winners. “The awards recognize the hard work put in day in and day out by Fernie business. It is great to take a moment and celebrate that effort and their success,” states Sheila Byers, Chamber Board President. 



Photo credits: Raven Eye Photography


2016 Community & Business Excellence Awards 

We are now accepting nominations for the 2016 Community & Business Excellence Awards. Recognize business excellence by nominating a company, organization, or individual today. 

Nominations are now closed. Nominees are being contacted. 

Click here for winner selection process

Nomination period is from August 1 to September 11. Businesses are welcome to self-nominate. All nomineess will be notified once the nomination period closes and asked to submit an award application that will be used by the judging panel.
The judging panel is comprised of business professionals from outside the Fernie area. 

Awards Gala - October 21, 2016 

to be held at Fernie Best Western Mountain Lodge

Join us for this celebration of Fernie's best.

This year's guest speaker is Kelsey Ramsden.

2016 Finalists





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