Two make Small Business B.C. Awards cut

Two of the five Penticton businesses nominated for this year’s small business awards have made it to the second round.

Two of the five Penticton businesses nominated for this year’s small business awards have made it to the second round.

Topping the public voting portion of the Small Business B.C. Awards were SOCountry Radio, nominated in the People’s Choice category, and White Kennedy LLP, nominated for Best Workplace. Both received enough votes to make it into the Top 10 semi-finalists in their category.

White Kennedy LLP, an Okanagan accounting firm, strives to provide a supportive environment for its employees on many levels including education, community involvement, staff training, social events, fundraiser matching, mentoring and promoting from within.

SOCountry was started by Dennis Walker as an Internet streaming radio station two years ago. Walker said it’s because of his listeners that he made it this far in the competition, describing their comments on the Small Business B.C. awards website as “heartfelt.”

“I have worked very hard, so that feels good. Any shortfalls I have, business-wise, I have tried to make up for with added effort,” said Walker. “I am just looking at as hard work that will pay off down the road, and that’s whether I win this award or not.”

Both businesses now move forward to face a panel of judges, who will review their applications, and based on the award criteria, narrow down the competition to the Top 5 finalists in each category. Those will be announced Jan. 30, 2015, and invited to give a Dragons’ Den-style pitch in front of a panel of judges on why they should be named the best in B.C. Winners will be announced at a gala dinner in February.

Crossfit Penticton was also nominated for People’s Choice, along with Burger 55 and Karoleena Inc, in the Best Company category. Burger 55 made it through to the final round last year in the same category.

More information on the finalists and the Small Business B.C. Awards can be found at www.sbbcawards.ca.