By Greg Hugh
The Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Minneapolis was filled to capacity when the Metropolitan Economic Development Association (MEDA) recently held its 43rd annual luncheon to celebrate Minnesota’s successful entrepreneurs of color, and to honor the leadership of Yvonne Cheung Ho who retired June 30 after heading the organization for 15 successful years.
After the guests were seated and enjoyed their lunch, Maury Glover, Fox 9 reporter, and emcee started the program by introducing Douglas Eden, MEDA board chair, to deliver his opening comments followed by John Stout, MEDA board member.
Cheung Ho, MEDA president and CEO and Andrea Novak, BMO Harris Bank, then continued the program with a year-in-review update and the awards presentation. Earning the Charles W. Poe, Jr. Entrepreneur of the Year was Elise Hernandez, president and CEO of IdealSystems Solutions. Additional honorees included: Kraus-Anderson Companies Inc. as Corporation of the Year; Association of Women Contractors as Community Partner of the Year; John Benzick, Venture Superflyas Volunteer of the Year and Cathy Cruz Gooch, Catallia Mexican Foods, Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame.
David Fong’s Restaurant and family score Spirit of Hospitality Award
By Greg Hugh
As a salute to outstanding customer service employees in Bloomington’s tourism, hospitality and retail industries, the Bloomington Convention & Visitors Bureau (BCVB) recently presented its 18th annual Diamond Service Awards. The event recognizes exceptional individuals who contribute to Bloomington’s success as a friendly world-class travel destination.
The McKnight Foundation invites nominations for the 2012 Virginia McKnight Binger Awards in Human Service. McKnight will recognize up to six Minnesotans who have demonstrated an exceptional personal commitment to helping others in their communities but who have received little or no public recognition. Echoing McKnight's mission statement, the Foundation seeks individuals who "attend, unite, and empower" others in communities throughout Minnesota. Each awardee will receive US$10,000 and will be honored at a ceremony in late summer.
by Greg Hugh
Each year the Bloomington Community Foundation (BCF) recognizes a Bloomington resident for notable achievements, demonstrated community leadership, high ethical standards, involvement in and support of community activities and/or organizations and projects, and someone who can address community challenges from past, present and future perspectives. This year, the award went to restaurateur David Fong of his eponymous restaurant.
By Chinese Heritage Foundation Friends
By the time the United States entered World War II in 1941, the Chinese population in the country stood at 78,000. Eager to show their allegiance to their adopted country, nearly 20 percent of Chinese adult males enlisted or were drafted into the U.S. armed forces. The enlistment average for the general population was 8.6 percent. Despite the still existing Chinese Exclusion Act, Chinese Americans found themselves being promoted as friends on government-issued posters and propaganda materials.1