Nominations open for business awards to honour strength through challenging time

Headshot of Shannon Smith
Shannon SmithAlbany Advertiser
ACCI's chief executive officer Mark Forrest has left the position after a short tenure.
Camera IconACCI's chief executive officer Mark Forrest has left the position after a short tenure. Credit: Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser

The region’s most prestigious business awards have officially launched for 2021 as Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry opens nominations for the annual Great Southern Business Awards.

This year’s awards will carry special significance after the challenges businesses have endured because of COVID-19.

ACCI chief executive Benita Cattalini said the pandemic environment forced businesses to “pull together”.

“Worker shortages have been exacerbated by COVID-related restrictions, but it would be wrong to say they didn’t exist prior to the pandemic,” she said. “Since the pandemic, it has been even harder to find chefs, managers and workers in agriculture, hospitality, cleaning, health and community service sectors.

“We have seen businesses share staff, change their service delivery methods, using more technology to communicate, sell online and deliver safely to the customers door.

“The support they offer each other and the support from customers is a testament to the strong community we are part of.”

She said the awards were a chance to recognise businesses that had been able to adapt or emerge through adversity.

The awards covers several categories for businesses and individuals, including business of the year, employee of the year, business start-up and home-based business.

Nominations can be submitted from July 19 on the ACCI website, with the awards to be presented at a ceremony on October 16.

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