The Arlington Chamber of Commerce recently celebrated the 33rd Annual Arlington Best Business Awards.
Winning firms consistently deliver exceptional quality of service to their customers, are industry leaders or offer a unique approach to delivery of goods or services, achieve significant growth or stability over the lifetime of their business, display an interest and concern for the success of the Arlington community, and demonstrate a commitment to diversity and inclusion, according to a news release.
“This year's winners provide exceptional value to their clients as well as to the greater community," said Chamber President & CEO Kate Bates. "We are proud to present this year's winners with these well-deserved awards and thank them for their continued investment in Arlington."
The 2019 Best Business Award winners are:
- Dalton Digital - 2019 Home-Based Business of the Year
- Pentagon Mixed Martial Arts, LLC- 2019 Service Small Business of the Year
- Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery - 2019 Retail Small Business of the Year
- Hungry Marketplace, Inc. - 2019 Technology Small Business of the Year
- Signature Theatre, Inc. - 2019 Nonprofit of the Year
- Arlington Community Federal Credit Union - 2019 Large Business of the Year
Following the presentation of these awards, the Chamber inducted Giuseppe Cecchi of The IDI Group Companies and Robert H. Smith into the Arlington Business Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame honors men and women with a connection to Arlington County who have demonstrated a long record of successful management, expertise, and business skills, along with notable achievements, and exceptional civic and community involvement.
Upon accepting the award for his late grandfather, Robert H. Smith, Michael Lisssaid he felt "very honored." He went on to talk about his grandfather's vision for Crystal City in Arlington, Virginia and his lasting legacy on the area. "My grandfather had so much confidence in his vision for what this area could be... to attract people to both live and work. Now 60 years later, his vision, his taste, his confidence, his perseverance, are not only a part of his legacy but have served as a major contributor to the success of the region. I can only imagine what he's feeling now - looking down - that Amazon, one of the most powerful companies in the world chose Crystal City as their second headquarters."
When accepting his award, Cecchi thanked the Chamber for bestowing him with this great honor. He began his acceptance speech with a brief history about his move from Milan, Italy to the United States, where he was able to achieve the "American dream." As an 89 year old engineer who had a very prosperous career, Cecchi shared important factors for business success. "I believe that a happy family life is an important factor to be successful in business... working hard is another important factor. In my younger years, I was working very hard, and now at 89 years of age, I still go to the office every day. Another very important factor is customer satisfaction which produces repeat business and good reputation. Finally, it is important to be persistent. To be successful in business one has to solve many problems. Every problem has a solution, you just need to find it."
Bates said, "Robert H. Smith and Giuseppe Cecchi are excellent models of what it means to be an Arlington icon. Their many important accomplishments in real estate and philanthropy have helped make Arlington the place it is today. It is an honor to induct these visionaries and community leaders into the Arlington Business Hall of Fame."
A list of past Best Business Award winners and inductees into the Arlington Business Hall of Fame can be found here.