Congratulations to all Award Recipients AND Finalists!
Business of the Year: Small
The UPS Store 445
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!
Business of the Year: Medium
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!
Business of the Year: Large
The Hills at Portal Golf Club
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!
New Business of the Year
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!
Supporter of the Arts Business of the Year
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!
Business Leader of the Year: Corporate
Heather Martin, Comfort Keepers
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!
Finalists: Lesley Noland, Starline Windows; Neil Yarmoshuk, CIBC Wood Gundy
Business Leader of the Year: Self-Owned
Erin Anderson, KA Creative Inc
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!
Business Leader of the Year: Under 40
Josiah Tam, Allora! Pasta + Wine
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.
Non-Profit Organization of the Year
Rotary Club of White Rock
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!
Community Builder of the Year
Mostafa Sabeti, Golden Glory Fitness & Martial Arts Academy
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!
Denise Darrell, SOURCES
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!