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Folsom Chamber honors business, service leaders

By: Rachel Zirin, Senior Reporter
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The Folsom Chamber of Commerce held their annual Business Awards Luncheon Match 22 to honor ordinary people doing extraordinary things in Folsom.

A full house of city officials, city staff, chamber members, local business owners and residents cheered on the hard-working and dedicated businessmen and women and volunteers in Folsom.

Inductive Automation received the Chairman’s Award, the first award of the afternoon.

“Inductive Automation is a total success story for the community of Folsom,” said Joe Gagliardi, president and CEO of The Greater Folsom Partnership. “We’re happy to have them here and glad they selected Folsom.”

Sally Howard of Folsom Lake College said Inductive Automation has top-notch corporate citizens in Folsom.

The Community Connector award was given to Mary Beth Hacker-Shipp, owner of The Pink Ice Cream Cart Co.

Dawn Johnson of the Folsom Chamber said everyone knows Mary Beth and her pink ice cream cart because she is everywhere in Folsom.

“Everyone knows her as the pink ice cream cart lady, but she is more than that; she has a true passion for helping the community,” she said. “People are excited to support her. She has given back money to almost every school in the community, and every sports team that asks her, she shows up with her cart and provides ice cream while raising money for them.”

Candy Harper was honored with the Wall of Fame award.

“The Wall of Fame was created so we could celebrate the people who have given a lot back to the Chamber over time and Candy Harper exemplifies that,” Gagliardi said.

The Young Professional of the Year was awarded to Kate Gonzalez, owner of Arthur Murray Dance Center.

“My wife and I have been dancing together since we were in high school. We love to dance, but we danced like when we were 16,” said Folsom resident Justin Raithel. “When Arthur Murray opened, we went into the studio and decided together to support the new business, and we learned a lot about not only about dance, but communicating with each other.”

Mercy Hospital of Folsom was honored with the Business Hall of Fame Award.

“When you look at a community and think about what things really makes a community stand out, having a hospital is one thing that really sets it a part,” Gagliardi said. “Folsom’s blessed to have Mercy Hospital and their contributions to the community.”

Innovative Business of the Year was awarded to Stem Express.
“Stem Express is just an incredible business that chose to locate in Folsom, and we are fortunate to have them,” Gagliardi said.

Folsom police Chief Cynthia Renaud was honored with the Public Service Award for her service to Folsom the past seven years.

“Chief Renaud is a remarkably talented person,” said Bob Holderness, Folsom resident. “She leads her team; they all know it, and they all admire her for it. It is not an easy job to be a police chief no matter what your gender, education or where you are doing the job.”

Renaud said Folsom is a special place.

“It is warm; it is embracing; and it’s because of the connections one human being has to another in this city,” she said. “I am so blessed to have had the opportunity to serve you for the past seven years.”

Educator of the Year was awarded to Oak Chan Principal Kat Bahry.

“FCUSD has 33 amazing administrators that are leading our schools, and Mrs. Bahry definitely stands out amongst those leaders, and she is one that stood out for many reasons,” said FCUSD Superintendent Sarah Koligian. “Her enthusiasm and her passion – she models that on a daily basis.”

The three Rotary Clubs of Folsom were honored with the Volunteer of Year award for their love of service.

“The rotary clubs don’t just focus on Parks and Recreation, they are working with the schools and other segments of the community,” said Folsom Parks and Recreation Director Robert Goss. “For Parks and Recreation, they come to us frequently, they follow through, and they do amazing, valuable work. It isn’t just of value to the city; it’s a value to the community. That’s where it counts, back to the people.”

The final award was awarded to Adrian Blanco Jewelry for Emerging Business of the Year.

“Having won this award last year and hearing that Adrian Blanco had won, I was so excited for him,” said Rosario Rodriguez, Folsom business owner and resident. “I met him shortly after his grand opening, and I realized what a great guy he is as someone who came into the city of Folsom, opened up a business, hit the ground running and basically just made waves in the jewelry industry. [It’s] a big deal for someone who just decided to leave the corporate world and open a business on his own.”

Cotton Rosser and Dorothee Cavitt-Mull were both named the Folsom Pro Rodeo’s 2018 Grand Marshals.