Celebrating economic achievement at the annual awards banquet

The spotlight is set, the stage is ready and the excitement is deep as Williston prepares for one of its most anticipated business events of the year — the Williston Economic Development/Small Business Development Center's Annual Awards Banquet.

Scheduled to take place on Sept.8, from 6-10 p.m. at the Old Armory, this much-awaited gathering has already sold out its tickets. The night is promising an unforgettable evening of recognition and networking. But this event is more than just an annual party, it is a celebration and acknowledgement of the tireless dedication and community-building efforts made by local businesses and individuals.

The Three standout, family-owned businesses of American State Bank & Trust, Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Williston, N.D. and Double EE Service, Inc. are nominated for the prestigious 2023 Icon Award. These businesses have not only contributed to the economy by providing good-paying jobs, but have also given back to the community by supporting local nonprofits and volunteering for worthy causes. Likewise, the NDSU Williston Research Extension Center Seed Cleaning Facility and Yellowstone River Beef have been honored with nominations for the Agriculture Project of the Year award, recognizing their vital contributions to Williston's agricultural sector.

The awards do not end there. The Regional Business of the Year nominees include the McKenzie County Ag Expo, Mountrail-Williams Electric Cooperative and The Links of North Dakota, all of which have enriched the community through their business offerings and charitable donations. Additionally, the 2023 Ambassador of the Year award has three noteworthy nominees of Jerry Bergman, Marilyn McGinley and Penny Slagle, each of whom has contributed to community-building in exceptional ways. Special honors will be bestowed upon Gene Veeder, Milestone Health Partners, Gary Sukut and Home Comforts for their standout contributions in various categories.

Yet, the banquet serves as more than just a stage for awarding business excellence. It stands as a symbol of the role played by the Williston Economic Development Office in shaping Williston's thriving business environment. Overseen by the Williston Board of City Commissioners, the office has been a cornerstone in the city's economic landscape. Operating under its mission to "facilitate, lead and promote a vibrant business climate through sound economic policy," the department has been crucial in attracting investments, creating jobs and furthering business within Williston. Its vision is to establish Williston as a business-friendly place. This has echoed through its various initiatives aimed at nurturing a vibrant ecosystem for both new and existing businesses.

The awards night shares the significance of the continuous work put forth by the Williston Economic Development Office. The organization's focus on long-term sustainability and economic growth has turned Williston into a dynamic hub for commerce and community. The awards night serves not just as an evening of recognition for business and individual successes, but as a tribute to an organization that sits at the epicenter of Williston’s economic achievements.

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