The SouthShore Chamber of Commerce filled its recent Recognition and Awards Banquet with praise for both the organization and respected individuals.
Chamber executive director Melanie Rimes, who has held the position for 11 years, started the evening at the SouthShore Falls Clubhouse with a salute to the organization's commitment to service.
"Our chamber is about businesses taking care of the community and the community supporting the businesses. It goes around full circle."
Hillsborough County Commissioner Sandy Murman presented the Board of County Commissioner Commendation Award to outgoing president Joey Henderson, community development manager for Florida Home Partnership.
Incoming president for 2017, Deb Adams, began the presentation ceremony by awarding the Standing Ovation Award to Sandra Williams of Sir Speedy.
Other awards included Matthew Moody of Little Harbor (Business Support Award); Sally Dittman for her leadership role in the Sun City Center Campaign Against Human Trafficking; Andrea Murray of the Tampa Bay Times (Helping Hand Award); Teri and Kevin Elwell of Kids R Kids Learning Academy (Lead by Example Award); Kelly Kowall of My Warrior's Place (Commitment to the Military Award).
The Fredricks family (Karen, Richie, Jason and Aaron) received the Community Impact Award.
Receiving the night's most prestigious award as the 2016 Person of the Year was John Smith of H&R Block. Smith owns three offices in the SouthShore area. He is also president of the Friends of the Library and is active in the Military Affairs Committee.