“Being involved in a community is what makes a community,” said Volusia County Chair Ed Kelley as he addressed the crowd at the West Volusia Regional Chamber of Commerce Business Awards ceremony.

The “Academy Awards”-style event, which took over Venue 142 in Downtown DeLand Oct. 30, was set up to “honor businesses for their significant role in driving the region’s business community and economic growth.”

This year’s Business Awards ceremony was the first of its kind, with businesses from all over this side of the county vying to be recognized.

The honors that were up for grabs included awards for association/nonprofit business, small business, medium business, rising star business, and overall business.

To have been considered for one of the Business of the Year awards, an organization needed to fill out a form with information demonstrating how they’ve set the standards for excellence and innovation with their business practices and community involvement for the past year.

The presenting sponsor of the event was AdventHealth Fish Memorial, with President and CEO Robert Deininger hosting the awards ceremony.

Ace Hardware of DeBary took home the Rising Star Business of the Year award, and Orange City’s iBuild Academy Inc. received the association/nonprofit Business of the Year award.

Small and Medium Businesses of the Year were Air Care of Central Florida and Jacob Heating & Air Conditioning, respectively.

Ross Janke, owner of The DeLand Hotel, joined Deininger on stage at the end of the event to help present the award for Overall Business of the Year to Central Florida Home Pros LLC.

After the awards were announced, nearly 100 guests were treated to tastings from Byte, the modern bistro directly across the street from Venue 142 on Woodland Boulevard.

“The Chamber’s Business Awards [are] the flagship awards program in the community that recognizes excellence in business. Conducted annually, this event is the recognition of businesses that set the standard, innovate and excel in our region,” stated Shari Simmans, executive director of the West Volusia Regional Chamber.

If you are the owner of a small/medium business or the leader of a nonprofit organization, you can contact the West Volusia Regional Chamber of Commerce to fill out paperwork if you’d like to be considered for these awards in the coming year.