Nominations for the upcoming Business Excellence Awards are now OPEN!
To submit a nomination, please fill out the form:
To see category information and nominations rules, please see below:
Category Information & Nomination Rules
Previous Award Recipients
Small Business of the Year (1-10 employees)
2022: The UPS Store 445
2021: Hillcrest Bakery & Deli
2020: Tap Restaurant
2019: Dream Orthodontics (tie)
2019: Grey Haven Hobbies & Games (tie)
2018: White Rock Beach Beer Co.
2017: Drive 365 Fitness & Health
Medium Business of the Year (11-25 employees)
2022: Afghan Kitchen
2021: Cosmos Greek Restaurant
2020: FlinnWest Solutions Inc.
2019: Southridge Dental
2018: Ocean Park Pizza & Village Pub
2017: Honeylush Hair Studio
Large Business of the Year (25+ employees)
2022: The Hills at Portal Golf Club
2021: Hardbite Chips - Naturally Homegrown Foods Ltd.
2020: Amica White Rock
2019: Starline Windows Ltd.
2018: Joseph Richard Group
2017: Comfort Keepers
New Business of the Year
2022: Safe Sweat
2021: Ricardo's Kandy Korner
2020: Mainland Whisky
2019: Zapoteca Mexican Grill & Seafood
2018: Looby Doo
2017: Seriously Good Catering
Supporter of the Arts Business of the Year (category introduced in 2018)
2021: Blue Frog Studios
2020: XBa School of Dance
2019: Addictive Comedy - now known as Hilarapy
2018: The Drama Class
Community Builder Business of the Year (category introduced in 2018)
2022: Denise Darrell, SOURCES & Mostafa Sabeti, Golden Glory Martial Arts Academy (tie)
2021: Innovative Fitness
2020: Everbean Cafe & Community
2018: Hazelmere Golf & Tennis Club
Non-Profit Organization of the Year
2022: Rotary Club of White Rock
2021: UNITI - Semiahmoo House Society
2020: Peace Arch Hospital Foundation
2019: Rotary Club of Semiahmoo (White Rock)
2018: Peace Arch Hospice Society
2017: Peninsula Productions
Business Leader of the Year – Corporate
2022: Heather Martin, Comfort Keepers
2021: Tony Baena, President & CEO, PARC Retirement Living
2020: Sandra Christian, Founder, President & Owner, Creative Kids Learning Centers
2019: Greg Timm, President & COO, Pacific Customs Brokers
2018: Ryan Moreno, CEO & Founder, Joseph Richard Group
2017: Darrell Jones, President, Save-on-Foods
Business Leader of the Year – Self Owned
2022: Erin Anderson, KA Creative Inc.
2021: Janine Maclean, Owner & Head Chef, Seriously Good Catering Inc.
2020: Faith Gibson, Owner, Mink Chocolates & LotusPedal yoga + spin
2019: Stewart Peddemors, Personal Real Estate Corporation, RE/MAX Colonial Pacific Realty
2018: Mostafa Sabeti, Golden Glory Martial Arts & Fitness Academy
2017: Jan Wait, Jan's on the Beach
Business Leader of the Year – U40 (category introduced in 2019)
2022: Josiah Tam, Allora! Pasta + Wine
2021: Sean O'Leary, Owner, Live Yoga
2020: Ramandeep Dhaliwal, President, WR Mattress Gallery
2019: Piya Sandhu, Owner & Chief Curator, The Handpicked Home
24th Business Excellence Award Recipients
Award Sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Chambers Plan
The UPS Store 445 is a self-owned and operated franchise by Jasmeet Mann, serving the South Surrey community for more than 10 years. It consistently gets 5-star reviews and provides friendly cost-effective printing, packing, shipping, mail services, passport photos and more. The store staff regularly contribute to local Rotary Clubs and have designed and printed materials and T-shirts for various organizations like the Sikh Green Team, a recycle awareness group. Jasmeet offers this advice to reduce stress, ease up on pressure and achieve more: “Stop worrying about the destination and start enjoying the journey.”
Get to know The UPS Store 445: click here!
All finalists for Business of the Year: Small
Award Sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Aspira Retirement Residences
Afghan Kitchen was established by Zabi Sarwari and his brother in 2017 and was the dream of a young boy in Kabul during times of war. Coming to Canada, the family was able to share the authentic cuisine and culture they left behind and reflect the generosity Afghans are known for. Dishes are driven by their mum's recipes, who works in the restaurant kitchen. Afghan Kitchen has supported many organizations including Surrey Hospital Foundation, Maple Green Elementary School, Southridge School, Kent Street Activity Centre, and many more. During COVID, their lives were turned upside down once again, and Afghan Kitchen offered a 30% discount to all frontline workers to give back to the community that has supported them.
Get to know Afghan Kitchen: click here!
All finalists for Business of the Year: Medium
Award Sponsored by Peace Arch News
The Hills at Portal Golf Club is a Par 3 golf course established in 1928 that takes you on a journey amid evergreens, two small lakes, and sloping terrain. The Course was recently bought by a local family that have taken it through a complete revitalization. It has a 4-star rating from Golf Digest and received “Top 100 Public Course in Canada” from Canada's Golf Ranking Magazine. Its newly renovated restaurant and Caffe are open 7 days a week. The Hills has hosted a Women's Golf Day that raised $15,000 for Peace Arch Hospital plus a Night with Elvis with proceeds going to Feed the Kids BC. It will also be hosting an Elvis Night in July and a Women's Golf Day in September.
Get to know The Hills at Portal Golf Club: click here!
All finalists for Business of the Year: Large
Award Sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Safe Sweat, established in 2022 by Emre Ozgur and Andrea Kloegman, is a unique, hybrid option for people to work on their mental and physical health, free of judgement. Not everyone wants to work out in public and working out at home can be tough. So Safe Sweat developed spaces where clients control everything from lighting to airflow to suit their own mood. It offers personal trainers who can ease anxiety and build confidence. Safe Sweat has been open for less than a year and donated over $6,000 in memberships and swag to local charities. Emre and Andrea also rallied together to send a massive donation to Turkey when it was devastated by earthquakes this year.
Get to know Safe Sweat: click here!
All finalists for New Business of the Year
Award sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Oceana PARC
Lizzie Allan and Elaine Cheung of Hilarapy offer a unique form of therapy that combines humour, creativity, and vulnerability since 2018. Its core purpose is to provide relief from emotional pain and stress, enhance feelings of well-being and joy, and improve confidence. It believes in the transformative power of laughter to connect individuals to their authentic selves, allowing for deeper healing and growth. Hilarapy has demonstrated its commitment to corporate citizenship and community involvement by supporting organizations and fundraisers like Avalon Women's Centre, Options Community Services and the White Rock Pride Society. In 2022, it launched The Hilarapy Recovery Project in response to the ongoing opioid crisis and to provide hope to those affected by addiction.
Get to know Hilarapy: click here!
All finalists for Supporter of the Arts Business of the Year:
Award Sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Canadian Tire
Heather Martin of Comfort Keepers supports seniors and their families by providing caregivers, companionship, respite care, and individualized plans for Alzheimer's and dementia. Since 2010, Comfort Keepers considers senior's interests to engage them physically, mentally and emotionally. Heather has the value that care is more than just doing a task for someone else, it starts in the heart. Two decades of senior care have shown her that concern can transform a life, create lasting friendships, and elevate a person's spirit. As Chair of the Semiahmoo Seniors Planning Table, Heather helps to organize FREE monthly Lunch events. Heather also gives back by offering services to the “Caring for the Caregiver” program, is a board member and VP at Brella Community Services, and a Director at the Chamber.
Get to know Comfort Keepers: click here!
All finalists for Business Leader of the Year: Corporate
Lesley Noland, Starline Windows; Neil Yarmoshuk, CIBC Wood Gundy
Award sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Janzen Insurance
Erin Anderson of KA Creative has focused her 23+ year graphic design career on corporate identity and marketing collateral. Designing over 100 coffee table books has established Erin's expertise in outstanding book design. Her artistic flair and passion for storytelling have transitioned into impactful brand and website marketing. Clients rely on Erin for her creativity and commitment to delivering outstanding results. Currently, she helps small businesses achieve big results by providing them with marketing & branding tools to thrive in a competitive marketplace. With small businesses facing financial constraints, she wanted to offer high quality, yet affordable solutions. Her team has volunteered for the Peace Arch Hospital Gala since 2017, donating time and design expertise. During Covid-19, she made masks, with all proceeds going to Sources Food Bank.
Get to know KA Creative Inc: click here!
All finalists for Business Leader of the Year: Self-Owned
Award sponsored by WR Mattress Gallery
Born and raised in the Lower Mainland, Josiah Tam is proud to be part of the White Rock community. His restaurant, Allora! Pasta + Wine, creates everything from quality ingredients and provides a local dining spot great for every day AND special occasions. Josiah was trained at Le Cordon Bleu in London, England and holds a Level 3 Wine & Spirit Education Trust accreditation with distinction. He excels at Private Dining and Catering as well as Food Styling, Photography and Menu Consulting for other restaurants. Josiah has charitable engagements with a few non-profit organizations focusing on vulnerable youth and those with addictions, including Mackie's Place and Wagner Hills.
All finalists for Business Leader of the Year: U40
Award sponsored by Gold Pillar Partner Simon Fraser University
Rotary Club of White Rock provides promotes integrity, and advances world understanding of goodwill and peace through the fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders. Carla Hansen, President of Club, ensures project work aligns with Rotary International with a broader scope of goodwill. Rotary is for all ages. Although it was established in 1995, it is no longer an old boys' club, but a diverse group of individuals working together. This year, Rotary partnered with several strong community organizations, donating over $27,000 to local programs, and giving $15,000 to climate initiatives. The Club has also supported many causes too numerous to mention that support youth and vulnerable populations.
Get to know Rotary Club of White Rock: click here!
All finalists for Non-Profit Organization of the Year
Award Sponsored by Semiahmoo Rotary Club
By age 18 Mostafa Sabeti got 2nd place in a national full contact karate tournament by winning 3 out of 4 fights – losing only to Iran's top kickboxing champion. He immigrated to Canada in 2006 and started teaching and competing in various levels of tournaments. Representing Team Canada in the World Championships held in Germany in 2011, Mostafa won a Silver medal. A shoulder injury put a pause to his career, but in 2018 at age 37, he won the Mens World Heavyweight Kickboxing Championship representing Canada. Diversity and accessibility are at the core of Mostafa's values. He offered free training for new immigrants to Canada. Mostafa also played a critical role in promoting the sport of Wushu to athletes of all ages in BC by initiating the Canada West Wushu Association. Mostafa is a true advocate for martial arts practice and giving back to the community.
Get to know Golden Glory Fitness & Martial Arts Academy: click here!
Award Sponsored by Semiahmoo Rotary Club
Denise Darrell has a well-established career in community service working tirelessly for those in vulnerable situations for over 35 years. Denise was previously the Executive Director of South Fraser Women's Services for seven years, after which she initiated the merge between South Fraser Women's Services and SOURCES to ensure the organization had a strong and viable foundation for years to come. The two entities merged in 2012, making Denise a part of the SOURCES family. Since then, she has been the Director of Women, Seniors and Community Services. This year, she will be officially retiring from her position, but it's clear retirement won't slow her down. She is currently the President-Elect for the White Rock Peninsula Rotary Club and is a member of the Board of Directors at the Soroptimist International of White Rock.
Get to know SOURCES: click here!
For information about any of these opportunities, please contact the Chamber Team!
Read coverage of the special awards night in the Peace Arch News: click here!
Watch all the special moments and speeches from the awards night!
Thank you to our generous Pillar Partners