The Horizon Council and Lee County Economic Development Office seek nominations for the 2019 Industry Appreciation Awards, which celebrate the Lee County business community and recognize outstanding local businesses that have positively influenced Southwest Florida. The honorees and finalists will be recognized during the annual Industry Appreciation Award luncheon on Friday, Oct. 25, at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort in Bonita Springs. Applications must be received no later than July 12 at 11:59 p.m.

Businesses will be honored in five categories:

Community Steward of the Year – Awarded to a company that partners with nonprofits, community organizations and programs to improve the quality of business and civic life in Lee County through its financial or volunteer support.

Innovator of the Year – Recognizes a local business that develops innovative advanced technologies in its own business or in its industry and has had a positive economic impact in Lee County.

Manufacturer of the Year – Awarded to a Lee County manufacturing business that exhibits excellence in leadership, performance, profitability, and workforce relations.

Start Up of the Year – Awarded to a company founded in Lee County in the last 3-5 years that has overcome challenges and demonstrated continued growth in revenue and staffing to emerge as a business leader.

Business of the Year – Awarded to a small and large Lee County company that has been in business 6 or more years under the same corporate name and ownership. The companies must offer high-quality products and services, provide superior customer service, demonstrate strong ethical standards, be community minded, actively support employee development, and exhibit exemplary leadership within its industry and with its clients, contributing to the economic growth and free enterprise of Lee County. Awards will be granted in the small business (1-50 employees) and large business (51 or more employees) categories.

To access applications or for additional information please visit

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