Vail Valley Partnership’s Success Awards celebrate business and community
The Vail Valley Partnership, the valley’s chamber of commerce, every year celebrates the best of the local business community with its success awards. The parties are generally big successes, too.
The latest of those celebrations was held May 12 at Edwards’ Riverwalk Theater. There was plenty of food, of course, and people getting reacquainted with old friends and colleagues after a busy winter season.
As folks grabbed popcorn and, perhaps, a beer, then settled into their seats, Chris Romer and Erik Williams of the Vail Valley Partnership honored the valley’s best.
Most of the winners were selected by a committee of former winners, but a couple of winners were honored by the Partnership’s leadership.
Former Vail Police Chief Dwight Henninger was honored with the Chairman’s Award.
Partnership Board of Governors Chair Mark Herron announced the award, saying the winner is viewed as someone who has made a long-lasting mark on the community.
Henninger, who’s now working as an adviser for the U.S. Department of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, said he’s noticed that in his first few weeks in Washington D.C., “almost everyone I meet has some connection to Vail … this is a special place.”
Brooke Skjonsby, director of the Vail Valley Charitable Fund, is the latest Member of the Year.
“There may not be a better example of a (community contributor) than Brooke,” Romer said. Referring to her work with Eagle County Gives, Romer called Skjonsby a “convener of leaders.”
Accepting her award, Skjonsby talked about her long love affair with the valley, starting with family visits, then trips to the mountains while a student at the University of Colorado.
Through personal and professional experience, Skjonsby said she’s learned that “We’re all part of the fabric of the community, pointing out issues and finding solutions.”
Mountain Pride and its founder/director Madison Partridge won a pair of awards. Mountain Pride was honored as the small nonprofit of the year, and Partridge took home the individual award for Community Impact.
Partridge made sure to invite people to this year’s Pride in the Park event, set for June 3 at Avon’s Nottingham Park. She also noted that the group’s work on behalf of the LGBTQ community “is more important than ever right now.”