Greater Fort Wayne Inc. presented its annual awards Thursday during the organization's annual meeting.
About 400 people attended the event at the Grand Wayne Convention Center.
The winners were:
• Leslee Hill and Rachel Tobin-Smith – GFW Inc. Women's Network Champions of Change Award, created to “recognize leaders who go the extra mile to mentor and empower women in Allen County.”
• Barb Smith – GFW Inc. Chairperson's Award, established to honor GFW board members “for outstanding accomplishments and performance to help promote the organization's mission and vision.”
• Patrick Dooley – GFW Inc. Service Award, created to honor “exemplary service to GFW and dedication to Allen County's economic growth.”
• State Rep. Matt Lehman – Elected Official of the Year, established to honor “exceptional efforts by elected officials to build a stronger community – and grow jobs and wages – by creating the best environment to attract and retain talent and business.”
• Tom Kelley – Maclyn Parker Swagger Award for Community Vision and Leadership, created to recognize “an individual who exemplifies the persistence and will to make Fort Wayne-Allen County a thriving community by being a strong advocate for economic development.”
• Three Rivers Distilling Co. – Small Business of the Year Award, established to celebrate “the success of small businesses and honors their contributions to Allen County's economic growth.”
The annual meeting celebrated the community's resilience during the coronavirus pandemic. John Urbahns, GFW's president and CEO, praised the organization's members.
“We've seen so many people – and so many companies – rise to the occasion in the past year to continue building our community's momentum,” he said in a statement. “These award winners went above and beyond. We're proud to serve a community that's full of people who are committed to making a positive impact.”