A who’s who of the Port Stephens business community gathered at Wests Club Nelson Bay last Wednesday night for the Port Stephens Examiner Annual Business Awards.
Interest was high in just who would win each of the 40 categories, ranging from accommodation, bakery and real estate to new business, and everything in between.
Customers submitted a record 7000 nominations in support of their favourite businesses.
Up to five businesses were shortlisted in each category from which the judges made their choice.
From the winning categories an overall winner was announced. In 2017 this honour went to Tackle World Port Stephens, at Nelson Bay.
“It was a great result for Brent Hancock and his team,” event organiser and sales representative from the Port Stephens Examiner,Tracy Marjoram said. “The result was pretty clear cut and testimony to the performance of the business in the not only the eyes of their customers, but also the judges.”
The awards are designed to recognise excellence in business and customer service in the area.
Local political figures in attendance included as Kate Washington (Labor State Member for Port Stephens), Meryl Swanson (Federal Member for Paterson), Port Stephens mayor Ryan Palmer, Deputy Mayor Chris Doohan, Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Scott MacDonald, Fairfax Newcaste/Hunter Group Managing Editor chief Chad Watson and Port Stephens Examiner editor Anna Wolf.
Owners and representative from major sponsors also attended including Peter Mazoudier Sea Breeze Hotel, Shane Cleary from Murray’s Brewery, Damien Cooper from DJ Cooper Accounting, Holly Baker from Forever Hair and Beauty, Peter Clough from Tomaree Business Chamber, James Gregoratos from Wests Club Nelson Bay, and representatives from Port Stephens Council.
“Without the support of our major sponsors, events like this would not be possible,” said Sue Prescott, Fairfax Lower Hunter Port Stephens sales manager. “It was fantastic to see our political and council representative showing their support for local business too.
‘And it was also nice to see all the businesses come together and celebrate not only being winners but being a finalist because it’s such accomplishment when the competition is so strong.
“A great night was had by all and the feedback has been incredibly positive.”
Ross Melville, Australian Community Media group marketing and promotions manager, MC-ed the event and kept proceedings running smoothly.
The awards have been the major business event for the Port Stephens business community each year for over 20 years, and planning begins now for next year.