EDC banquet honors top businessesSt. Croix EDC honored its 2011 Business of the Year winners at a Feb. 16 banquet at Kilkarney Hills in rural River Falls.
St. Croix EDC honored its 2011 Business of the Year winners at a Feb. 16 banquet at Kilkarney Hills in rural River Falls.
The 2011 winners include Future Farm Food and Fuel LLC (rural Baldwin) as Emerging Business of the Year; Stevens Engineers, Inc. (Hudson) as Small Business of the Year; and Sajan Inc. (River Falls) as Business of the Year.
Future Farm Food and Fuel (www.afuturefarm.com) was established by John Vrieze and Steve Meyer. Waste streams from adjacent farms and other operations that are converted to fuel to warm a state-of-the-art aquaponic and hydroponic greenhouse. Their system produces all natural vegetables, herbs and fish.
Stevens Engineers (www.stevensengineers.com) has provided engineering and planning services to public and private sector clients since 1973. Partners Angela Popenhagen and Scott Ward acquired the company from the previous owner in February 2007. Popenhagen is a LEED Accredited Professional and her majority interest in the company provides Stevens Engineers with a Women’s business enterprise designation. Ward has a national reputation in planning, consulting and designing ice rinks. Recent projects include the Phoenix Coyotes training center (Scottsdale, Ariz.); the Ice Skating Center (Pasadena, Calif.); and Division 1 college facilities such as the Amsoil Arena (Duluth, Minn.); the Sanford Center (Bemidji, Minn.); and the Kohl Center expansion (Madison).
Sajan Inc. (www.sajan.com) was founded in 1997 by Shannon Zimmerman and his wife and business partner Angel Zimmerman. The company is the leading global provider of cloud-based translation services and software to customers selling their products into international markets. Headquartered in River Falls, Sajan serves its clients with other offices in the U.S., Europe, Asia and India. Industries served include life science, software, e-commerce, manufacturing, legal, and travel, hospitality and leisure.
EDC president Ryan Sicard served as the evening’s emcee. Each of the winners received a plaque from the EDC as well as a Legislative Citation from Madison and congratulatory letters from U.S. Rep. Ron Kind, U.S. Senators Herb Kohl and Ron Johnson, and County Board Chairman Daryl Standafer.
Previous winners from 1994-2010 were introduced during the program. Certificates were presented to EDC members in appreciation of their financial support over the last 10 consecutive years.
Entertainment was provided by comedian Dick Jonckowski, the long-time public address announcer for men’s basketball games at the University of Minnesota.
The 18th annual awards banquet was attended by 160 guests.