A half-dozen fresh-faced ventures — plus a few high-profile returning businesses — round out the Top 10 finalists for the KC Chamber’s 2023 Small Business of the Year award, announced publicly Friday during a social media rollout.
“Small businesses drive KC’s economy, and we couldn’t be more excited for this year’s Top 10, and the opportunity to continue supporting our small business community,” said Joe Reardon, president and CEO of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce. “Eighty candidates applied this year, and we were wowed by all of them. KC’s small businesses are going strong.”
The 10 finalists were first revealed during a private event Thursday evening where award nominees learned if they’d advanced to the Top 10, including:
- BASYS — A personal payment processing firm that makes accepting credit and debit cards convenient and safe.
- Crema — A digital product agency that designs and builds custom software.
- Crux (returning finalist) — A marketing agency which combines executive-level marketing and business strategy.
- DMC — DMC provides commercial HVAC and plumbing services to midsize businesses across the KC metro area.
- J. Rieger — A Kansas City distillery founded in 1887 by Jacob Rieger, shut down by Prohibition, revived in 2014.
- Parrish & Sons (returning finalist) — A 100-percent woman-owned construction company specializing in excavation, grading, and demolition.
- Quantum Resource Professionals — Established in 2002, this small business offers specialist staffing solutions for school districts and healthcare organizations.
- Resolve (returning finalist) — A counseling and therapy practice specializing in individual therapy services for adults, couples, teens, and children.
- The Running Well Store — A running store designed to help runners of all levels, including novice runners, competitive athlete, or someone who simply needs a good pair of shoes.
- Walz Tetrick (returning finalist) — A full-service advertising agency that’s been creating insights-drive campaigns since 1967.
Finalists will now compete for the prestigious Small Business of the Year title or “Mr. K Award” — named for the late Kansas City entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Kauffman — which honors a local business that has shown growth or sustainability with strong employee relations, a commitment to DEI initiatives, and a record of giving back to the community.
Previous recent winners include Charlie Hustle and Chicken N Pickle, the 2022 winner that hosted Thursday’s announcement at its Overland Park location.
Click here to read about Chicken N Pickle’s 2022 win or here to check out Charlie Hustle’s victory for the coveted award.
This year’s finalists were selected after a Candidate Showcase at Union Station earlier this month, during which small businesses showed off their companies to the public, as well as to independent judges working on behalf of the Chamber selection committee.
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The 2023 winner is set to be announced at the Small Business Awards Luncheon, scheduled for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, June 14 at the Marriott Muehlebach Tower.
Click here for more information on the KC Chamber’s Small Business Celebration.
Check out a photo gallery from Thursday’s event below, then keep reading.
In addition to the Small Business of the Year, the KC Chamber will present the following specialty awards at the luncheon in June:
- The KC Chamber Emerging Business Award
- The KC Chamber Small Business Equity Award
- The KC Chamber Weida Award for International Small Business of the Year
- The KC Chamber Legacy of Kansas City Award
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