by S Lowe 5THE FM newsonline wattlerangenow
The fourth annual Millicent Business Community Associations (MBCA) Award Ceremony was held on Friday 31st October at the Somerset Hotel with a cocktail supper and presentations. There are six categories in the MBCA Awards; two individual awards and four business awards. Nominations for the six MBCA Awards are nominated by the public and a judging panel of 5 decide on the winners by assessing the 25 word nomination entered. A seventh award, the Mayoral Award, is chosen by Mayor Gandolfi.
5THE FM’s Rebekah Lowe compered the event. She introduced MBCA Chairman Mike Reilly who welcomed the nominees and guests saying he is proud of the awards and they have grown over the four years since their inception and it gives the community the opportunity to recognise local businesses, with their nominations.
Member of the judging panel Glenn Brown explained that the criteria of 25 words or more was decided on by the MBCA Committee this year, so that the award is one which recognises outstanding achievements, rather than being a popularity award. This year on-line nominations were introduced and although there were some who did not quite complete the nomination form, there were almost 100 on line nominations showing that this was a popular addition to the process. Approximately 200 nominations were submitted overall.
A cocktail supper was served to the 60 plus attending and a power point presentation was prepared by Clint Bowering of Komma Media for the event.
The winners of the MBCA Awards are:-
MBCA Rotary Young Employee of the Year
Winner of the Rotary Young Employee of the Year is Pippin Ellis from the Commonwealth Bank and she was recommended for the award for her efficiency, instilling confidence that your financial affairs are being handled professionally and with confidentiality. Pippin was surprised and proud and gave credit to the other staff who have helped her learn her new role.
MBCA Employee of the Year
Winner of the Employee of the Year is Anne Nowak from Target Country who is described as a person who has taken on management duties in a store that has no official manager and with her dedication and skill has achieved excellent results and successes in the Millicent store. Anne said the award belonged to all of the staff and was very grateful for the acknowledgement.
MBCA Outstanding Business Service Industry
Outstanding Business in the Service Industry was won by New Heaven Indian Restaurant. Owners Sukhchain Singh and Kamal Jit Kaur have been in business in Millicent for just eight months and said they are very grateful for the warm welcome they have been given by the local community. ‘Thankyou for the love you have shown New Heaven Restaurant, we are most grateful.” Recommendations came from as far away as Melbourne and Naracoorte showing that this new business is already attracting economic advantage to Millicent.
Outstanding Business in the Retail Industry
Outstanding Business in the Retail Industry was won by Andy’s Bakery who have been recognised throughout the State as well as the local award received on Friday night. Recommendation came from as far away as Victoria and were appreciated by the staff attending.
Outstanding Business in the Agricultual/Horticultural Industry
Outstanding Business in the Manufacturing/Horticultural Industry was won by McCourts Garden Centre. Owner Christine Agnew was particularly recognised for her successful business which attracts economic advantage to Millicent and her ongoing support to the community. Christine could not attend as she had a prior engagement at Hutchesson’s 100 year celebration. Staff member, Taneka Walker accepted the award on behalf of McCourts Garden Centre.
Ourstanding Business in Manufacture and Construction
Outstanding Business in Manufacturing/Construction was won by Ant’s Redgum Gallery – showing that a hobby or skill based in Millicent can be turned into a successful business, receive recognition Statewide and attract economic advantage to Millicent. Unfortunately Ant had an accident just prior to leaving work for the event and was unable to attend. President Mike Reilly will present the award to Ant at a later date.
Winners of the Business Awards received a trophy and an advertising package from 5THE FM.
All nominees will receive a Certificate of Nomination.
The MBCA Merit Award was initiated by the MBCA four years ago, to recognise a Millicent business, owned and operated by the same people/family for 25 years or more, has been successful, brought economic advantage to Millicent and has a proven record of supporting the community.
In recent years this award has become the Mayoral Award with Mayor Peter Gandolfi choosing the winner.
Mayor Gandolfi’s chose to recognise the South Eastern Times Newspaper this year with the Mayoral Award. Wattle Range CEO Peter Harriott presented the award to the Border Watch Manager Robin Reid, in the mayor’s absence.
The SE Times has been reporting in Millicent for over 100 years, formerly owned by the McRostie family it has been owned by Mt Gambiers Scott Group of Companies for approximately 5 years.
Prior winners have been Teagles Excavation and Thompson Drilling.
A positive story about one of the winners:–
How to attract people to Millicent is often the topic of conversation with local businesses and council and it seems the winners and many of the nominees are already doing this very well, judging by the comments submitted for the awards.
One story which came to us this week is an excellent example:-
A tourist visited McCourts Garden Centre and inadvertently left her bag containing her licence and credit cards etc in it last week. A staff member found it and they decided to hold the bag until closing time at 5-00 pm, incase the traveller came back. McCourts called the local police, when there was no sign of the owner at 5-00 pm. The police came and took the bag, and made contact with the bag owner’s husband who was at Beachport. Relieved owners said they would drive back into Millicent, but no, the local police decided to take the bag and it’s valuable contents to Beachport to save the travellers the trip. The travellers were so relieved and impressed by the local friendliness and honesty, they drove into Millicent the next day and gave a $50-00 donation to the McCourt’s staff Christmas Party by way of a thankyou. They had toured the South East the day they lost the bag, including Penola, and said they had no idea where to begin looking for it.
The call from the police was very welcome and they left with a good impression of Millicent and its community, sure to return again.
Great story McCourts and Millicent Police – congratulations!
The MBCA Outstanding Business Awards were sponsored by 5THE FM and SE Times.