Community Impact Awards 2013

A salute to companies making the world a better place

By Caitlin Hill

(Editor's note: To submit a nomination for the 2014 Community Impact Awards, click here.)

Margaret Mead once said, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." The businesses honored in our inaugural Community Impact Awards are putting this thought into action through their hard work and dedication to giving back.

Change agents come in all shapes and sizes. Whether a company employs four people or 4,000, it has the ability to make a positive impact on its community. We know that Minnesota companies take pride in their communities and have long made giving back a part of their culture in a variety of ways. Here we give a nod (and heartfelt thanks) to these Minnesota businesses for their positive impact.

Though there are many more businesses that give back in ways both big and small, these 36 finalists were chosen based on their overall impact.

Please click each category name for more information on the winner and finalists.

Creative Campaign Award -- Best marketing campaigns created on a pro-bono basis by a Minnesota-based agency.

** Gabriel deGrood Bendt [winner]
** Introworks
** Roepke Public Relations

Employment Award -- Companies that have brought major employment to a community in Minnesota -- or kept it here.

** Donnelly Custom Manufacturing
** Marvin Windows and Doors [winner]
** Miller Manufacturing Company

Community-Event Award -- An event supported by a company that brings a community together.
** Cowboy Jack's (The After Midnight Group)
** First & First
** The Nerdery [winner]

Long-Term Achievement Award -- Companies that have shown at least 10 years of commitment to nonprofit organizations in Minnesota.
** Bremer Bank
** H.B. Fuller
** Weber Shandwick [winner]

Social Entrepreneurship Award -- Companies that were created to address social, environmental, or other issues affecting Minnesota
** Cream for a Cause
** Finnegans [winner]
** Forgotten Shirts

Sustainability Award -- Companies that have found creative ways to offer products or services in a way that's better for the environment in the long run.
** Accent Signage Systems [winner]
** Legends Golf Club

Workplace Giving Campaign Award -- Successful employee giving or volunteer campaign created by a company for a specific nonprofit.
** American Engineering Testing
** C.H. Robinson Worldwide
** CSM Corporation [winner]

Yellow Ribbon Award -- Companies that have made a specific effort to employ our returning veterans.
** APi Group [winner]
** Parsons Electric
** U.S. Bank

Youth Initiative Award -- Company events or programs that teach children skills or inspire them to become the leaders of tomorrow.
** Bowman Tool & Machining [winner]
** Flint Hills Resources
** Salo

Best in Class Award: Large (500+ employees)
** Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America
** Bremer Bank [winner]
** Morrissey Hospitality Companies

Best in Class Award: Midsize (51-500 employees)
** Gray Plant Mooty
** Marco [winner]
** Northeast Bank

Best in Class Award: Small (50 or fewer employees)
** Evolve Systems
** Little & Company
** Maguire Agency [winner]


We sincerely thank our judges for the time and effort they committed to this project: Laura Boyd, Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, Senior Vice President of Membership, Development, and Resources; Daniel Gumnit, People Serving People, CEO; Jeff Bajek, Venture Bank, Senior Vice President & Credit Risk Officer; Kari Niedfeldt-Thomas, Social Enterprise Alliance, Board Member; Jay Hammond, Highland Bank, President; Thomas Keller, Moss & Barnett, Partner; Christi Mack, McGladrey, Partner.

We'd also like to thank the attendees of the Community Impact Awards event (held Feb. 21, 2013), as well as our keynote speaker and emcee

Keynote Speaker: R.T. Rybak, Mayor of Minneapolis [read his full remarks]

Emcee: Paul Batz, Author / Speaker/ Executive Coach

Thank you to our Partner Sponsor:

Comcast Business Class