Last night at the Anne Williams was selected as the 8th winner of the annual Debin Benish Outstanding Businesswoman Award.
As tradition now dictates, the previous year’s award winner announces this year’s winner.
Last year’s winner, Michele Spry, was accompanied on stage by Dave Benish and Steve Powell at the 2012 Columbia Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting & Awards Banquet.
Michele read these words to the crowd:
This year’s recipient is an active Chamber of Commerce member and has been an active Women’s Network member. She has served on the Small Business Committee for several years including co-chairing this committee. She has been very active in Women’s Network including co-chairing the Business Owner’s Committee. She was instrumental in re-directing this committee towards a stronger business focus during her years as co-chair. She has also served on the Women’s Network steering.
This year’s recipient is a true pioneer for women. She is a lot like Debin as she is a small business owner dedicated to helping other small businesses succeed, giving back to her community, nurturing family and mentoring other women. She specifically encouraged another business owner to focus on what they did well and outsource what they didn’t and to keep pushing forward when they were ready to give up on their business. This woman business owner is doing great in her business today because of her mentoring. She encourages people not to give up but rather ask for help and be optimistic.
This year’s recipient has volunteered many hours in our community over the past 30 years including volunteering with The United Way, The American Red Cross, The American Heart Association, The Muscular Dystrophy Association to name a few. She has served on the board of CampFire Boys & Girls and Junior Achievement.
As a fellow Midway resident, I first met our recipient when her daughter, Kimberly attended Midway Heights Elementary School. I began to really get to know her when I got involved in the Chamber and more specifically the Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors. I am proud to present the 2012 Debin Benish Outstanding Business Woman Award to Anne Williams, President of Job Finders Employment Services.
About The Award
With the support of Steve Powell, the current owner of Delta Systems, and Debin’s husband Dave Benish, Women’s Network continues the encouragement of Debin’s smile with this memorial award, an engraved picture frame, and $1,000 grant.
This award is designed to honor a Columbia Business Woman who:
- Exhibits leadership in supporting small business
- Has a record of volunteering in the community
- Is a mentor to other business women, and
- Owns or is employed by a Chamber-member business, preferably a Women’s Network member
Debin Benish started Delta Systems Group at a time when women were not encouraged to venture out on their own, not to mention in a technology field. During her 18 years in business, Debin and her staff trained thousands of people in Mid- Missouri on many different software programs and provided computer network support to hundreds of companies.
In addition to achieving great success in her company, Debin was actively involved in the Chamber and Women’s Network. She served on the Chamber Board of Directors, Accreditation Task Force, Business Conference and Showcase Committee, Government Affairs, Education, Leadership Columbia, Women’s Network Business Owners Committee, and Ambassadors.
Debin had a philanthropic heart. She and the Delta Systems staff quietly assisted many charities and non-profits with their technology needs, such as the Central Missouri Food Bank, as she served on countless technology committees and boards. Among the most noteworthy accomplishments is the revolutionizing of the registration process for the biannual MU blood drives by creating the system that is still used to this day to assist in minimizing donor wait times. For all these reasons and her corporate mantra of providing excellent customer service and caring for projects, the Chamber honored Debin and Delta Systems as the 1992 Small Business of the Year and again in 2005 as a Small Business of the Year Finalist.
The Columbia Daily Tribune ran a great story on all the award winners from that night. Read it online at http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2012/jun/20/chamber-honors-members-at-annual-meeting/