Easley Chamber of Commerce Presents Annual Leadership and Small Business Awards

At its Annual Meeting & Awards Luncheon on March 21, the Greater Easley Chamber of Commerce presented its annual leadership and small business awards to honor several businesses and individuals for their leadership, business success, and community service.

At its Annual Meeting Dinner on March 22, the Greater Easley Chamber of Commerce presented its annual leadership and business awards. Pictured are award winners (L-R): Leebo Keels (2022 Powdersville Board Member), Lunita (Lu) Bagwell (Cornerstone of Easley), Kelly Osteen (2023 Young Professional), Allie Stone, Dale Stone, Mary Beth Stone (2023 Small Business), Cassie Hamilton (2023 Pillar of Community), Lori Carnsew (2022 Downtown Board Member), Julie Capaldi (Duke Energy Citizenship & Service), Stephanie Enders (2023 Non-Profit), Emily DeRoberts (Duke Energy), and Artis Bufford (2022 Board Director).

Three awards were presented for volunteer leadership to the chamber. Artis Bufford with One Church- Easley was honored as the 2022 Board Director of the Year in recognition of dedicated service to the chamber’s Board of Directors. Leebo Keels of the YMCA of Easley, Pickens, & Powdersville was recognized as the 2022 Powdersville Business Council Advisory Board Member of the Year, and Dr. Lori Carnsew with Verity Primary Medicine & Lifestyle was honored as the 2022 Downtown Easley Business Council Advisory Board Member of the Year.

In addition, five awards were presented recognizing business and individual achievement. That’s Karma Boutique & Good Karma Ice Cream were honored as the 2023 Small Business of the Year for their business success and commitment to community service. The 2023 Non-Profit of the Year honor was presented to Ripple of One for their dedicated work to empower families and young adults to gain financial freedom and break their dependence on public assistance. Kelly Osteen with Cindy Fox Miller & Associates was honored as the 2023 Young Professional of the Year for her professional achievements and community service activities.

Receiving the 2023 Pillar of the Community Award was the Pickens County Library System to honor their work in enriching lives in Pickens County for over 90 years. In addition, a special Cornerstone of Easley Award was presented posthumously to Mayor Larry Bagwell to honor his legacy of servant leadership, which continues to serve as a foundational cornerstone for our community.

As part of the celebration, Duke Energy also presented its annual Citizenship and Service Award, which honors an individual who uses their time, talents and passion to set a standard and foster a culture for citizenship, service and community responsibility for others. Julie Capaldi, President & COE of United Way of Pickens County, was honored as the 2022 award recipient for her 28 years of serving as an agent for change to improve our community and the lives of our citizens.

Cindy Hopkins, President of the Greater Easley Chamber of Commerce, stated, “It’s an honor to recognize the success and leadership of local business leaders whose contributions are building a strong foundation for long-term community growth and sustainability. Our chamber offers our sincere gratitude for their leadership, which serves as an example for all of us. Our chamber is especially grateful for the opportunity to honor Mayor Bagwell, as he was a true friend to Easley and to our chamber, and his legacy will always serve as a true testimony to servant leadership.”

Established in 1935, the Greater Easley Chamber of Commerce represents approximately 350 business investors with a mission to serve as an advocate for business growth and sustainability in the greater Easley-Powdersville area. For more information, visit www.easleychamber.org .