Tuesday, October 23, 2001
Steamboat Springs The local business community will gather to honor its best Saturday night when the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association and Steamboat Pilot & Today present their annual Navigator Awards for the business leader of the year and business of the year.
The Yampa Valley Business and Professional Women will also name their businesswoman of the year Saturday night. The awards dinner and program kicks off at 6 p.m. at the Steamboat Grand Hotel.
Nominees for the BPW award include Routt County Treasurer Jeanne Whiddon, Ellen Hoj of the Regional Affordable Living Foundation, Steamboat Springs City Council President Pro Tem Kathy Connell and Gretchen Van de Carr of the Rocky Mountain Youth Corps.
Last year's Business Woman of the Year was city of Steamboat Springs ice rink manager Stacey Foster. She has played a role in establishing several after-school programs for local youngsters since coming to Steamboat in 1988. Foster told an audience of more than 400 people she was especially proud of having built local interest in women's and girls hockey programs.
This year's nominees for business leader of the year include Michael Lomas, principal of Steamboat Lodging Inc. He is a former chamber president and current chairman of the summer marketing committee. He also serves on the organizing committee of the Nordic Combined World Cup.
Nominee Chris Diamond is president of the Steamboat Ski Area. He serves as a trustee of the Yampa Valley Community Foundation and is vice chairman of Colorado Ski Country USA.
Jeff Little, the third nominee, is a principal in the Ore House at the Pine Grove. He is a past president of the restaurant association and a current chamber board member. He took a leadership role on the school district calendar committee and successfully sought to change spring break from March, when many business people cannot leave town, to an April spring break.
The 2000 business leader of the year was then recently retired Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. Vice President of Marketing Rod Hanna.
Nominees for business of the year include Richard and Leslie Ryan of Off the Beaten Path Bookstore and Coffeehouse; Jeff Little of the Ore House at the Pine Grove; and Seth Cheikin and Paul Underwood of Cafiva.
Ed MacArthur of Native Excavating accepted the 2000 business of the year award.