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New Chamber Award Recognizes Responsible Business Practices

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce invites community members to nominate local business leaders this month for three Chamber awards.

New this year, the Upstanding Award will honor a local business or organization for excellence in responsible business practices such as corporate social responsibility, sustainability, DEI initiatives and volunteerism.

“In recent years, both the public and the business community have increasingly recognized the importance of responsible business practices,” said Chamber President & CEO Elizabeth Cromwell. “These forward-looking approaches build value for everyone in our community, and we’re excited to celebrate the great work being done by local organizations.”

The Upstanding Award was inspired by best practices defined by the US Business Roundtable in 2019 as follows: We will deliver value to our customers; invest in our employees; deal fairly and ethically with our suppliers; support the communities in which we work; and generate long-term value for our shareholders. Nominations for upstanding businesses or organizations will be reviewed through the lens of these best practices.

Two annual Chamber awards will honor individuals who have made a significant impact in the Greater Charlottesville region.

The Chamber Business Leader of the Year Award recognizes an individual, past or present, who has contributed significantly to our region through sound professional practice and has inspired others through his or her actions. The award was most recently presented to Liza Borches of Carter Myers Automotive in 2020.

The Christopher Lee Small Business Person of the Year Award recognizes an outstanding business owner who has made a significant contribution to the success of their small business and our community. Pierre Sober and Javier Figueroa-Ray of Pearl Island Café and Catering receive the award in 2020.

Nominations will be open through October 31 at

Anyone in the community may submit a nomination, and self-nominations are welcome. Nominees for the Upstanding Award and the Christopher Lee Small Business Person of the Year Award must be current members of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce.

All three awards will be presented at the Chamber’s Fabulous Fest, a festive celebration of our business community, on Thursday, December 1, at The Wool Factory. Tickets for the Fabulous Fest go on sale October 19.