The planned October 29 Awards ceremony will now be held on February 18 due to Covid lockdown and to ensure the judging panel is able to interview entrants face to face in their businesses.
NorthChamber Board President Tim Robinson says that face to face contact is critical to accurately assess the entries of businesses and gauge the various business operations by seeing them first hand.
“The awards have a really proud history in our business community so cancelling was never really on the table,” says Mr Robinson.
“Our judging process underpins the entrants’ written entries, offers judges critical information and ensures the integrity of the judging process and upholds the value of the Awards. Because judging cannot take place until Level 2, we need this extra time,” says Mr Robinson.
“The value to sponsors and entrants of the real-time, in-person networking and connecting with each other before and after the Awards night is really important in a community like Northland.
“This was not a decision taken lightly by the NorthChamber Board. The postponement allows us to see the awards through to fruition next year, while maintaining the mana of the event and giving continuity to us, our sponsors, entrants, vendors, suppliers and other stakeholders who contribute to making the event happen.”
The postponement is supported by principal sponsors Northpower and Top Energy who want Northland businesses to have the best chance of prospering despite challenging times.
NorthChamber CEO Steve Smith says he also wants to reassure all Northland businesses that NorthChamber is there to support them all.
“As we hopefully prepare to return to some form of normality, I would also encourage businesses and their loved ones to have their Covid vaccinations because the more we are protected the quicker we can get back to normal,” says Mr Smith.
“We will continue to inform people of what we are up to and we look forward to when our judging panel are able to safely get around businesses. We look forward to celebrating the awards in February.”