With more than 300 people packing The Ballroom at Grove Nov. 19 for the Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance's Sandies Awards, Alicia Chalmers faced the crowd smiling, right on queue.
Chalmers, of the Manatee Community Foundation, had just received the Ray of Sunshine Award.
"Sometimes it can be hard to be a ray of sunshine," she said. "But sometimes it's great to know you are making other people's day great."
Besides making Chalmers' day great with a Sandies award, eight other LWRBA members had a similar good day.
The Sarasota Polo Club's Ron Trytek, who won the Networking King award, admitted he is works well behind the scenes, but not in front of a crowd.
"I wanted to win, but I didn't want to give a speech," said Trytek, who gave the audience several polo facts instead of talking about himself.
Allison Imre Perkowski, who took home the Bull by the Horns award, said it's easy to win awards when you have an exception team behind you, such as her team at Grapevine Communication, or her fellow LWRBA members.
Most of the winners were somewhat shocked.
"I definitely didn't see this coming," said Michelle Olivo, who won the Best Rancher award. Olivo, of Current Technologies, had previously been nominated for Networking Queen, an award that went to Sirius Day Spa's Karen Medford.
Other winners were Lorri Kidder of Carr, Riggs and Ingram, for Above and Beyond; Heater Koester of Manatee Technical College for Rising Star; Abigail Kahl of United Way Suncoast for Young Professional of the Year; and John Holz, of Plunkett Raysich Architects, as Volunteer of the year.