OAKFIELD: The East Hants and Districts Chamber of Commerce announced some big changes to their Excellence Gala.

Mostly, the addition of new categories, seeing businesses now honoured in 16 categories.

Being held at Oakfield Golf and Country Club on Oct. 24, the addition of new categories will see more businesses honoured.

New Business of the Year

Recognizes outstanding achievement as a new business. Considerations include company growth, introducing new products & services, sales & marketing initiatives and community service. This business would also show great potential for future success. Businesses open prior to July 31st 2015 are not eligible.

Non-profit of the Year

Recognizes an outstanding non-profit or charitable organization that has achieved excellence by significantly contributing to the overall quality of life within the community. Considerations include programming and/or activities, environmental stewardship, education and innovation.

Outstanding Customer Service

Recognizes an individual(s) who has shown consistent, ‘above and beyond,’ customer service to customers while providing their product or service.

Professional Services Business of the Year

Recognizes outstanding achievements while exemplifying professionalism and integrity. Considerations include superior customer service, market development and community service. This category includes, but is not limited to, law, accounting, financial, insurance and real estate.

Restaurant of the Year

Recognizes a restaurant in the East Hants & districts area that serves a consistent quality and excellence in food, atmosphere and service. Eligible restaurants must have been in operation for five or more consecutive years.

Tom Parker Chamber Member of the Year

Recognizes an outstanding East Hants & Districts Chamber member for his or her hard work and dedication to the business community through volunteer work with regard to recreation and community improvements. * This is not a People’s Choice award. The recipient will be chosen by the EHCC board of directors.

Top Tourism Business

Recognizes businesses that have a key role in raising awareness and improving the tourism and hospitality industry in East Hants and surrounding areas.

Young Entrepreneur

Recognizes a person who is under the age of 35 and has demonstrated entrepreneurial spirit. Considerations include leadership, dedication, resilience, initiative and innovation.

Over the coming weeks, The Weekly Press will be featuring the finalists of the categories.

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Patrick Healey
Pat has grown up in East Hants, having called Milford, and now Enfield home. He graduated from the journalism program at Holland College in 2001, and has spent time at newspapers in NL and Alberton and Summerside, PEI before becoming a reporter/photographer at The Weekly Press/The Laker in October 2008. He has a rescue kitty named Asha that is much loved—and spoiled. Pat is also our "social engagement guru." Check him out on twitter!