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Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022

BBB Torch Awards

Businesses recognized for achievements

For over 100 years, the Better Business Bureau has worked to promote a high standard of ethics in business, according to its mission statement.

On Oct. 20, the BBB will acknowledge local firms who exemplify those standards at its Torch Awards luncheon. The annual event is sponsored by 318 Forum, Townsquare Media and Citizens National Bank.

According to the news release announcing the date, the BBB stated, “We launched the Torch Awards program to recognize businesses building what we now call ‘cultures of trust.’ Today, the BBB supports a working collaboration of like-minded experts and organizations dedicated to increasing marketplace trust by providing practical leadership, character habits and organizational ethics alignment resources for leaders and educators.”

Businesses will be recognized for their achievements in four categories:

• Integrity: businesses that maintain a solid commitment to business practices and integrity.

• Customer Commitment: businesses that have an outstanding customer service program.

• Good Neighbor: businesses and their employees that play a significant role in support of local organizations and charities.

• Non-Profit: businesses and organizations that are not-for-profit enterprises.

This year marks the 16th annual awards.

It will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at East Ridge Country Club. The luncheon will begin at 11:30 a.m., with a program and awards presentation to follow. The keynote speaker for this year’s event will be Dr. Timothy J. Magner, president of the Shreveport Chamber of Commerce.

Most recently, according to his online profile, Magner served as the chief information officer of the LSU Medical School in Shreveport. He previously served the LSU system as the director of training for the system’s statewide implementation of the EPIC electronic health record system. Before joining LSU, Magner served as the executive director for the Partnership for 21st Century Skills (P21) and vice president of Keystone for KC Distance Learning (KCDL), operating the nation’s largest private online middle and high school. He also served as the director of the Office of Educational Technology for the U.S. Department of Education, responsible for coordinating the development and implementation of the department’s educational technology.

Sonja Bailes, the public elations liaison for the Bossier Parish School Board, will act as the emcee for the program. Bailes is a former reporter and anchor at KTBS.

Companies and individuals were encouraged to nominate their organizations or other companies they felt qualified as an outstanding example of a business in each of the four categories. The deadline for nomination is Sept. 22. Nominated businesses/nonprofits were required to be located and conduct business in the Northwest Louisiana Torch Award service area. That area comprises Caddo, Bossier, DeSoto, Red River, Webster, Bienville and Claiborne parishes.

Nominees were not required to be an accredited business of the BBB. Nominees presented supporting materials for judging that demonstrated why they should be considered for a Torch Award. Nominees also submitted a history of the business or organization, which told the stories of the people and communities who worked together to build its successful legacy.

Judging by the selection committee will take place on Sept. 29. Entries were evaluated by an independent, voluntary panel of community and business leaders.

The proceeds from the annual Torch Awards go to student scholarships for area colleges and universities. Those institutions that benefit from the program are Louisiana State University in Shreveport, Southern University Shreveport/Bossier, Bossier Parish Community College, Centenary College of Louisiana, Northwestern State University in Natchitoches and Louisiana Tech University in Ruston.

To find out if tickets are still available or to sponsor a table at the event, call 797-1330, ext. 109.


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