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Simon, Scotiabank winners at Pemberton Chamber awards

The biggest contributors to volunteering and local funding recognized

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The best of Pemberton was recognized and celebrated at the chamber of commerce's 2011 awards ceremony on Jan. 12.

Pemberton & District Chamber president Mark Blundell emceed the evening, handing out five awards to six winners. The event took place at the Big Sky Golf and Country Club,

2011 Business of the Year - Scotiabank

Scotiabank was recognized for putting money into the community and staff time as well. Each year, this business invests between $25,000 and $40,000, which in recent years has helped over 17 programs and organizations in Pemberton.

Branch manager Aaron Oviatt believed it was the first time the bank had been honoured.

"Customers have been coming in to say that it is about time and staff are excited by the recognition. They take pride in what they do for the community," he said.

Oviatt said the branch made good use of Scotiabank's corporate-wide Bright Future program, which has the bank match funds raised by staff for local causes and events. In this past year this has

2011 Citizen of the Year - Marnie Simon

Simon was out of the country and unable to attend Thursday's ceremony. She was lauded by the judges as a person whose volunteer contributions have benefited many over the years including the Pemberton Rotary Club, The Pemberton Valley Seniors Society, Friends of the Library, the Community Kitchen, Library Board and regional healthcare projects.

2011 New Business of the Year - Mile One Eating House

As the awards were being handed out, chef Randy Jones and his partner and wife Cindy Yu were cooking up a storm for patrons at their new eatery and unable to attend.

The restaurant aims to bring the 100-mile diet to Pembertonians and judges cited their using local products and generosity to the community.

Jones said the restaurant had now been in operations for 10 months and they'd successfully been able to showcase regional and B.C. products.

"Any time you're recognized for the team's efforts it's a good thing," he said.

2011 Customer Service Award - Pemberton Valley Wellness

Dr. Shannon Paul was awarded the customer service prize. Pemberton Valley Wellness offers chiropractic and therapeutic treatment and the judges described it as a business that treats patients with special care and donates expertise back to the community.

Paul said it was the first time they were nominated.

"We just try to put our patients first and treat them as the unique human beings they are," she said.

"It's a great honour and we do provide the best care for our patients, it's nice to see that our goal and is achieved. We strive to have an healing and energetic atmosphere."

2011 Community Service Award - Pemberton Lions Activities Society

Pemberton Lions Activities Society was a joint winner of the Community Service Award for their continued work with seniors, including the Lions Villa, Seniors Activity Centre and the new Affordable Seniors housing complex. The dedication of these volunteer Lions is exemplary, according to chamber judges, noting great support providing housing that is accessible for seniors of all abilities and financial constraints as well as disabled persons.

2011 Community Service Award - Pemberton Skateboard Society

The Pemberton Skateboard Society also won the award for Community Service. Volunteers worked tirelessly over seven years to ensure skateboarding was part of the community, with the Pemberton Skatepark opening in June 2011.

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