St Albans Chamber of Commerce Community Business Awards hit Zoom for virtual ceremony

The 2020 St Albans Chamber of Commerce Community Business Awards were presented on Zoom by Paul Rosenthal and Alastair...

The 2020 St Albans Chamber of Commerce Community Business Awards were presented on Zoom by Paul Rosenthal and Alastair Woodgate. - Credit: Archant

One of the highlights of the St Albans business calendar moved onto a virtual platform last week, but that didn’t stop it proving a huge success.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 11th annual Chamber of Commerce Community Business Awards took place on Zoom, with the ceremony presented by Chamber President Alastair Woodgate, and director Paul Rosenthal.

The awards offered a platform to celebrate local individuals and businesses from young achievers and innovators to green champions and leaders.

Chamber business manager Emma Fisher explained: “We still wanted our awards to be a highlight of the business year but obviously asking all our nominees and sponsors to gather at a venue was not going to be possible. Instead, we decided to bring the awards to them remotely. In this current climate, we felt it was important to have something positive to shout about.”

This year’s winners were Gabby O’Malley (Young Employee), JPA Furniture (Sustainability), L’Italiana and Tabure (joint Best Restaurant), Lee Wood (Customer Commitment), Redway HR (New Business), Lumin Wealth Management ( Business Growth), Susan Glenholme (Debenhams Ottaway) and Dr Natalie Shenker (Hearts Milk Bank).

Alastair added: “Thank you to everyone who joined us for our awards ceremony. I was delighted at the interaction. Many people have commented how much atmosphere and buzz there was for an online event. The chat facility was busy all evening with members, nominees, finalists and winners engaging with each other, proving what a great networking organisation the Chamber is.

“What is particularly noticeable this year is that the vast majority of our winners – from Young Employee to Business Leader and President’s Award winner - are women: I’m pleased that their obvious depth and breadth of talent has been rightly recognised.

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“It was a really inspiring evening, demonstrating yet again what great business people we have in our district. The quality of nominations and of our finalists was higher than ever. I know all the judges had a difficult but also highly enjoyable task in selecting a winner in each category, from such strong contenders. This year has demonstrated more than ever that whatever external forces are thrown at us, we are a resilient bunch who will use all our creativity, passion and determination in the betterment of business and the community.”

Thanks to sponsors Pearldrop Video Production, Bradhams Fantastic Flowers, the Herts Advertiser, St Albans BID, Rumball Sedgwick, STANTA, Rayner Essex and Ember Designs, without whom the entire awards process would not be possible.