The Kawartha Chamber of Commerce & Tourism presented their annual Awards of Excellence on November 3rd. With over 80 nominations there was a lot to celebrate.
The Chamber’s Citizen of the Year (sponsor RBC), Jennie MacKenzie; has owned and operated the Lakefield Pantry for 28 years. Long before becoming a familiar mantra, “Buying local” was an important aspect of her business. Today, products from 25 local suppliers are carried in the store. For over 10 years she has been the lead organizer of the PolarFest ice carving competition in Lakefield and the Polar Paddle. Her involvement has included a multitude of other community initiatives including Imagine the Marsh, Lakefield Farmers’ Market Board, Family Paddle Day, Ladies Night Out, and more.
This year, the panel of judges elected to honour Mike & Aileen Dean with a special award for Lifetime Achievement (sponsor RBC). For decades they have been successful real estate agents, most recently with RE/MAX Eastern Realty. Their commitment to community betterment has been outstanding. Aileen actively participates in the Selwyn Women’s Institute, Mike introduced the Village of Lakefield to the concept of recycling, they have both prepared and served breakfast at Ridpath school for 12 years and have volunteered with the Lakefield Horticultural Society helping to maintain Village gardens as well as organizing their Antique Sale & Flower Show for over 30 years.
Evolving from a stay-at-home mom’s contribution to the family income, Griffin’s Greenhouses now employs over 15 people and is a regional destination for all things gardening. They were awarded Outstanding Business Achievement (sponsor County of Peterborough).
Award Recipients in remaining categories:
Young Professional sponsored by Community Futures Peterborough: Erin McLean of McLean Berry Farm
Customer Service Excellence sponsored by CIBC: Camp Kawartha
Commercial Development or Renovation sponsored by Ball Real Estate: Lakeshore Designs
Entrepreneur Innovation sponsored by Gastles Registered Patent Agents: Kawartha Local Marketplace
Not-For-Profit Excellence sponsored by Darling Insurance: Habitat for Humanity Peterborough & Kawartha Region
Retailer of the Year sponsored by Nexicom: Cross Wind Farm
Tourism or Hospitality Excellence sponsored by Peterborough Economic Development: McLean Berry Farm
Visit kawarthachamber.ca for more details on the recipients and finalists.
Names of winners in photo
Back Row: Rob Howard, Kawartha Local Marketplace; Sam & Erin McLean, McLean Berry Farm; Victoria Whitney, Griffin’s Greenhouses; Angela Jones, Lakeshore Designs; Jacob Rodenburg, Camp Kawartha
Front Row: Sue Jeffries & Nikki McCue, Cross Wind Farm; Emily Ferguson, Habitat for Humanity Peterborough & Kawartha; Jennie MacKenzie, The Lakefield Pantry; Aileen & Mike Dean; Karen Copson, Camp Kawartha