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City presents 2022 Small Business Awards

The Vandalia City Council recognized several local business owners during its regular meeting Monday night.

The selections for the 4th Annual Small Business Awards were announced, and plaques were presented to recognize the efforts and impact that they have on the local economy and community.

Anita Gottman, owner of Iya & Friends, was named the “Female-Owned Business of the Year.” The shop, which is located at 422 W. Gallatin St., specializes in antiques, crafts, gifts as well as new and used items.

City Administrator LaTisha Paslay read the nominations for each winner. The submission stated that Gottman had a “wonderful business. Customers say they love her store” and that she is always willing to help her 20-plus vendors.”

The next award announced was the “Veteran-Owned Business of the Year.” Tony Richardson of Vandalia Bowl was recognized for working hard “to keep bowling a recreational sport in Vandalia,” according to the nomination.

The “Community Involvement Business of the Year” went to Wanda and Ken Hubler at Times Right, which sells and repairs clocks and has a showroom of other second hand furniture and home decor.The award was given to the Hublers, according to the nomination, are involved in the Festive Fridays event around the holidays and think about not only their own business but others downtown as well.

“Ken and Wanda are both community-involved,” the nomination said. “They care so much about Vandalia.”

Peg Harris at The Hair Shop received the “2022 Small Business of the Year Award.” Harris was nominated by a longtime client,who said she first went to her shop in 1966 and has been going ever since. Harris was recognized for her work at a local assisted nursing facility and for working “to keep her faithful customers looking their best.”

Mark Langston of OctoChem is the 2022 recipient of the Economic Impact Small Business Award. The distinction was given for his expansion efforts and the $1 million water main project, proving that the company will continue to have a positive impact on the local economy,” the nomination said.

In other awards, the Soroptimist International Club of Vandalia was given the Non-Profit Group or Club of the Year Award. In the nomination submission, the group was applauded for “being at the forefront of helping women and girls become the best versions of themselves,” through their various programs and initiatives.