One of our favorite events at the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce is the signature Art of Achievement Awards, where we bring together business, community and the hospitality industry to celebrate those who create delightful experiences for their customers and the community. The honors are unveiled during an evening gala held at the Flint Institute of Arts that is usually well-attended by several hundred guests.
However, in August of this year, we made the difficult decision to postpone Art of Achievement until November 2021. Like many events, the awards ceremony and gala were put off due to the coronavirus pandemic and the restrictions on the size of indoor gatherings mandated by the state.
However, our staff didn’t stop there. There was a strong feeling that we needed to do something, and that the community’s spirit could use a boost. Furthermore, it was clear that many in our community – from ordinary citizens, both young and older, to business owners to health-care workers to leaders in the nonprofit world – were going above and beyond to help us see our way through this challenging year. Some of these individuals are new to the community while others are longtime residents, whose names or faces may be familiar to you.
So, the staff got together and brainstormed a different way to recognize some of the heroes in our community – under a new moniker, called Twenty in ’20. The forum allows the Flint & Genesee Chamber to highlight 20 individuals who have made a unique and positive impact in our region in the unique year of 2020. The honorees were selected from a pool of nominations that were submitted to us through an open process.
You can read about all them in the November-December 2020 issue of AND magazine. This special edition of the Flint & Genesee Chamber’s business magazine celebrates stories that are uplifting and triumphant. You will also find stories that highlight innovation and community love and fellowship, the power of the human connection, and fierce determination.
Taken together, these stories reflect the unyielding spirit and generosity that makes us who we are in Flint and Genesee County. You can find them online at and. flintandgenesee.org.
I hope that you will read each and every story. It’s well worth your time. You might even see someone you know. And, just maybe you will feel compelled to reach out to thank them for all that they have done. Or consider sharing their story when you see it on social media. Also, when you visit digital AND, be sure to check out the congratulatory message to all our nominees. The name of each nominee is listed. For we are grateful for all who took time to submit nominations to the recognition program.
In closing, let’s unite to show those who care so much about others, how much we care about them.
Tim Herman is the CEO of the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce.