Awards Program

The Independence Area Chamber of Commerce holds an Annual Awards Banquet to celebrate community and business accomplishments of the prior year.  Awards are bestowed in the following categories to recognize the outstanding spirit, passion, and dedication that businesses, organizations, and/or individuals have for our community.

Business of the Year
A business whose owners and/or employees have demonstrated outstanding initiative in the community through volunteer efforts, projects, and/or donations.

2018 — BankIowa
2017 — Pipestone Veterinary Services
2016 — Pink PolkaDot Studio
2015 — Fareway
2014 — Signs & More, LLC
2013 — Fusion Forward, LLC
2012 — Dunlap Motors
2011 — Larson Construction
2010 — BankIowa
2009 — Geater Machining & Manufacturing
2008 — Okoboji Grill
2007 — Bachman T00l & Die
2006 — Q3 Innovations, LLC
2005 — Buchanan County Health Center Therapy & Wellness Connection
2004 — BankIowa

Chamber Entrepreneur of the Year
(known as Business Person(s) of the Year from inception to 2017)
An individual who has excelled in their business field and has benefited, or will benefit, the community.

2018 — Andrew Higgins
2017 — Kriss McGraw
2016 — Angie Schares & Erin Maurer
2015 — Mark Nielsen
2014 — Tim Reed
2013 — Dr. Dan Kegler
2012 — Doug Cue
2011 — Dick Curry
2010 — Angie Manson
2009 — Joe Olsen
2008 — Dr. Carrie Hamilton
2007 — Ron Hearn
2006 — Brian Eddy & Chad Ronnebaum
2005 — Shawn Phelps
2004 — Brian Lillie
2003 — Robert Hearn
2002 —
2001 — Scott Geater
2000 — Connie Brown
1999 —
1998 — Bret Kivell
1997 — Bonita Davis
1996 — Jeff Orvis

Volunteer of the Year
(known as Citizen of the Year from inception to 2017)
An individual whose volunteer actions and/or community support has been extraordinary in nature, and by those actions have greatly benefited the community.

2018 — Anna Mae Pentecost
2017 — Tracy Belle
2016 — Shalon Frye
2015 — Rick Wulfekuhle
2014 — Pete & Terry Gaumer
2013 — Joe Olsen
2012 — John Behan
2011 — Keith Donnelly
2010 — Emmett Donnelly
2009 — Kriss & Steve McGraw
2008 — Sue Ann Raymond
2007 — Leonard Schmidt
2006 — Bill Stamper
2005 — Mike McGill
2004 — Jon Holland
2003 — Craig Johnson
2002 —
2001 — Gene McBridge
2000 — Carolee O’Brien
1999 — Tom Magner
1998 — Bill Hickey
1997 — Jerry Barske
1996 — Maurice “Tex” Pentecost
1995 — John Evers & Jeanette Randall
1994 — Dolph Leytze
1993 — Art Finnegan
1992 — Stan Slessor
1991 — Brenda Ristvedt
1990 — Vickie Kegler
1989 — Lorraine Mochal
1988 — N. Clark Madison
1987 — Wilbur Tiffany
1986 — Frank Brimmer
1985 — Jim Hughes
1984 — Shirley Erdman
1983 — Mary Kay Blin
1982 — Larry D. Kane
1981 — Elizabeth McSweeney
1980 — Dale White
1979 — Mary Klotzbach
1978 — Paul Soener
1977 — Robert Blakesley
1976 — Dr. P.J. Leehey
1975 — Leanne Harrison
1974 — Al Hynes
1973 — Jim Martin, Sr.
1972 — Ed Harberts
1971 — Oliver Greenley
1970 — Reeves Hall
1969 — Don Parrish
1968 — Carl Kuempel

Chamber Hall of Fame
Induction into the Hall of Fame is bestowed upon an individual(s) who has demonstrated outstanding community involvement and leadership.  The inductee should be a person who has freely given of their time and talents for numerous community events and fundraisers.

2018 — Rob C. Robinson
2017 — Vicki McClintock
2016 — Joe Olsen
2015 — Jon Holland
2014 — LeRoy Greenley
2013 — Dr. Bhasker Dave and Don & Connie Brown
2012 — Judy Scott and Jim & Karen Connell
2011 — Frankie Bowden and Wanda Goins
2010 — William (Rabbit) & Helen Donnelly and Frank Shaw
2009 — Jeannie Neeley, Fred Smock, and Brian Eddy
2008 — Jack Hoglan and Frank Brimmer
2007 — Robert & Shirley TeKippe, Robert Richard, and Jim Blin
2006 — Chuck Conlin, Leanne Harrison, and Bonita Davis
2005 — Bob Cook and Doug Beier
2004 — Dr. John Mochal and Dianne Brimmer
2003 — Dr. Richard Myers
2002 —
2001 — Wilbur Nielsen
2000 — Jerry Boubin, Sr.
1999 — Jim Hughes
1998 — Rudy Leytze
1997 — Ila Dunlap
1996 — No inductee this year
1995 — Oliver Greenley, Dr. Robert Henderson, Don Parrish, Ed Harberts, Frank Brimmer, and Cyril “Cy” Handfelt 

Jeannie Nealey Mentor of the Year
2018 — Daryl Roberts
2017 — Mike Smock
2016 — Denise Hawker
2015 — Kitty Myers
2014 — Marty Ives
2013 — John Klotzbach
2012 — Lois Thedens
2011 — Lois Temeyer
2010 — Norma Gates
2009 — Donna Harms and Burt Van Horn
2008 — Julie Miller
2007 — Joe Olsen
2006 — Wilbur Tiffany and Cole Thompson
2005 — Dr. Doug Peterschmidt, Stephany Harvey, and (Jacob Freeman) & Mary Ellen Earles
2004 — Richard Schillinglaw

Project of the Year
An outstanding civic, community, church, or organizational project that has benefited, or will benefit, the community.

2018 — Buchanan County Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign
2017 — Buchanan County Health Center Expansion
2016 — Independence Aquatic Center
2015 — Brandon Park
2014 — RAGBRAI
2013 — Independence Junior/Senior High School
2012 — Wapsipinicon Mill Roof Project
2011 — Multipurpose Facility
2010 — Buchanan County Fair Association & Independence Motor Speedway
2009 — Operation Family Pack
2008 — Independence Public Library
2007 — RAGBRAI
2006 — Brew-B-Q
2005 — Heartland Acres Agribition Center
2004 — Independence Day Celebration

Teacher of the Year
An outstanding educational provider who continues to and goes above and beyond to push his or her students to achieve their highest goals. The individual creates a fun and productive learning atmosphere for our youth and is dedicated to encouraging learning and growth.

2018 — David Lang
2017 — Jenny Beatty
2016 — Julie Flickinger
2015 — Helen Lukes
2014 — Lori Dietzenbach
2013 — Connie Weber
2012 — Kay Reidy
2011 — Cheryl Hand
2010 — Pat Thomas
2009 — Susan Harper and Gary Buresh
2008 — Joanne Alessio
2007 — Tim Nichols
2006 — Marilyn Freeman
2005 — Connie Sorg
2004 — Bob Bainbridge
2003 — JoAnn Crain
2002 —
2001 — Deb Dutler
2000 — Jacquie McTaggart
1999 — Richard Krone
1998 — Gene Ficken
1997 — Harriet Short
1996 — Charlene Ortner
1995 — Wanda Goins
1994 — Ed Trullinger