Local Entrepreneurs Honored

Friday, May 08, 2009

Small business owners and entrepreneurs were big winners during a special awards luncheon held in their honor Friday.

The annual awards program, sponsored by the Tulsa Metro Chamber, recognized and thanked an array of worthy recipients, representing a mix of businesses. Approximately 350 people attended the ceremony held at the Tulsa Marriott Southern Hills.

"The backbone of the Tulsa economy is our small business community. We are only limited by our willingness to dream and our determination to succeed.Small businesses are indispensable. They create the majority of our jobs, they drive our economy and are part of the solution that will lead us out of the economic downturn," said David Page, chairman of the Tulsa Metro Chamber, and market president for JPMorgan Chase & Co.

He noted that 81 percent of all businesses in the Tulsa metro area have fewer than 10 employees. That translates into more than 29,000 businesses, all of which create a regional economic impact of $ 3.1 billion dollars a year.

Winners of the Tulsa Metro Chamber's Small Business Awards included the following recipients: - Family-Owned Business Champion: Steve York, CEO and board of directors president, York Electronic Systems Inc.

- Women in Business Champion: Adrienne Kallweit, owner and founder, SeekingSitters Franchise System Inc.

- Financial Services Champion of the Year: Cynthia J. Sharp, president and owner, Sharp Financial Services.

- Small Business Journalist of the Year: Margarita Vega-Treviño, president and editor, Hispano de Tulsa.

- Minority Small Business Champion: María De Leon, owner, Que Buena KXTD 1530.

- Young Entrepreneur of the Year: Roger Thompson, owner, Thompson Photos.

- Small Business Person of the Year: Julie Hakman, president, AmericanChecked Inc.

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