The Meadville-Western Crawford County Chamber of Commerce's Diamond Awards honoring area businesses will be in a virtual format this year.

Nominees in the various categories have been released and the winners will be honored in a pre-recorded video showcase at 7 p.m. June 23 on the Chamber’s YouTube channel.

Normally presented each April as part of the Chamber's annual dinner, this year's Diamond Awards ceremony and annual dinner were canceled due to Pennsylvania's COVID-19 shelter-in-place order.

"The Chamber is delighted to be honoring these deserving individuals, nonprofit organizations and businesses that are doing so much for our community," Christa Lundy, the Chamber's executive director, said. "There are so many wonderful acts happening, especially during this pandemic. That is why we are looking forward to recognizing these Chamber members who have been doing remarkable things throughout this past year."

There will be no awarding this year of the prestigious Gov. Raymond P. Shafer Award for Distinguished Community Service due to the pandemic. The committee members from the Chamber, Allegheny College and Shafer Law Firm would prefer to wait until the honor can be presented in person.

The Davies family and Allegheny College will also wait until 2021 to honor students with the Lew and Ellie Davies Award for Outstanding Community Service.

The 2020 Diamond Award categories and nominees are below:

• Emerging Leader — Kyle Astor of Acutec Precision Aerospace Inc.; Brian Cagle of Pepicelli, Youngs & Youngs PC; Drew Cervone of Acutec Precision Aerospace Inc.; Jason Nesbitt of Center for Family Services; and Brian Nichols of ONE Federal Credit Union.

• Small Business — Lightning Strike Productions/The STREAM; Pampered Palate Café & Bistro and Conference Center; and Roberts Jewelers.

• Small Nonprofit — Crawford County Historical Society; Crawford Heritage Community Foundation; and Meadville Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Fund. 

• Large Nonprofit — Erie Homes for Children and Adults Inc.; Junior Achievement of Northwestern Pennsylvania; and Meadville Family YMCA.

• New Business of the Year — The Chalk Shop; Earth, Wind, and Wire Studio and Rock Shop; Indigo Boutique & Botanica; and Millennial Money Management LLC.

The Emerging Leader Award is presented to an individual in the early years of a career who has demonstrated leadership qualities within their businesses and community. The Emerging Leader Award was established to foster young leadership and enhance retention of young professionals in our community. All nominees have demonstrated professional leadership and a commitment to community service. 

The business awards recognize local businesses that have achieved success and support initiatives and organizations that enhance the quality of life in the Meadville-Western Crawford County area. All nominated businesses have demonstrated admirable performance, growth, innovation, creativity and community involvement. 

The Small Nonprofit and Large Nonprofit of the Year awards celebrate local organizations that have achieved success while supporting initiatives and projects that enhance the quality of life in the Meadville-Western Crawford County area.

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