Felicia Seedorf, the managing director of Chapman & Associates Real Estate Appraisers, thought the best part of her day Nov. 13 would be mingling and eating turkey at Polo Grill and Bar during the 2016 Sandies Members' Choice Awards luncheon in Lakewood Ranch.
Then she heard her named called as the Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance's winner for the "Best Rancher" award.
Although surprised, Seedorf had a hunch why she won.
"I tell people how wonderful the Ranch is and how great it is to do business here," Seedorf said. "I'm pleasantly persistent and I won't stop until I get you to join this business community."
More than 250 Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance members and their guests gathered in the Fete Ballroom to recognize their top members.
A pool of 47 finalists were selected by their peers through an online voting process. The winners were chosen based on their levels of personal and professional achievement. The goal of this ceremony is to honor volunteers for devoting their time and compassion to the community.
“The Sandies is such a special event for our organization," said Heather Kasten, the LWRBA executive director. "It’s a day for us to pause and genuinely celebrate and recognize outstanding leaders and volunteers within our organization. We are really acknowledging every one of the 47 finalists, all of whom are significant contributors to the Alliance.”
Winners of the 2016 Sandies Awards:
One of a Kind Award: Kim French, Willis Smith Construction, Inc.
Rising Star Award: Jonathan Marsh, Home Helpers of Bradenton
Ray of Sunshine Award: Peggy Kronus, Willis Smith Construction, Inc.
Networking King Award: Ken Burke, Hometown News USA
Networking Queen Award: Morgan Gerhart, Goodwill Manasota
Bull by the Horns Award: John Barnott, Manatee County Government
Young Professional of the Year Award: Ryan McIntyre, McIntyre, Elwell and StrammerGeneral Contractors, Inc.
Best Rancher Award: Felicia Seedorf, Chapman & Associates Real Estate Appraisers
Volunteer of the Year Award: Sally Ullman, Sally Ullman Photography