County Chamber celebrates businesses, leaders with 2021 prizes

Edward May, Kim Whitehead, Linda Osborne of The Village Printer; at left, they’re with Five-Star Subaru’s
Ben Guenther. (contributed by the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce)

County Chamber celebrates businesses, leaders with 2021 prizes

The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce this week named Five-Star Subaru’s Ben Guenther as its Eugene A. Bettiol, Jr., Distinguished Person of the Year as part of its year-end award ceremony.
Chamber officials stopped by Five-Star and other award winners on December 21 and 22 in surprise visits to present framed certificates to this year’s honorees.

The Chamber’s Board of Directors and local citizens met December 1 to wade through multiple nominations in each category, with the Board choosing winners on December 15.

Along with Mr. Guenther, the Chamber presented these awards:

  • Distinguished Business of the Year:
    Hartwick College, Oneonta
  • Small Business of the Year:
    The Village Printer, Oneonta
  • Breakthrough Business of the Year:
    OEConnect/Otsego County
    Cooperative, Inc., Hartwick

The Chamber’s interim President, Al Rubin, said award winners “improve and enrich the lives of the residents” of Otsego County.

“One of the functions of the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce is to recognize excellence in the business community, highlighting the amazing organizations that work tirelessly in our region,” he said.

Of the winners, he added, “We are so pleased to be able to highlight their successes
and contributions to the region.”

The letter nominating The Village Printer for ‘Small Business of the Year’ reflected Mr. Rubin’s point about the important role these businesses play, writing, “They donated banners to many of the Oneonta High School sports teams so they can show their team and school pride year after year … The Village Printer helps keep our community strong through their efforts.”

Mr. Rubin said COVID-19 precautions prevent an in-person event at this time.

“As soon as we are able, a proper celebratory event will take place where we can appropriately honor all of the awardees together,” he said.

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