DiDonatos win lifetime award for achievement
Jesse Parks named Business Leader of Year
STEVENSVILLE — Queen Anne’s County business professionals gathered for the annual Chamber of Commerce Excellence in Business Awards ceremony and Expo Thursday, Oct,. 19, at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club, overlooking the Chesapeake Bay and the William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge.
The awards, held on the second floor terrace, recognized businesses and individuals for their work and accomplishments.
With seats overlooking the water, the sun shining bright and a slight breeze coming off the Bay, people watched their peers receive awards and citations from state and federal representatives.
Each award winner received citations from Maryland’s 36th-District delegation and from U.S. Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen’s offices.
The awards event turned into a meeting at one point to allow the Chamber to vote on its executive board for the coming year. All of the nominees were accepted. Those names and positions include: Casey Palmer of Palmer’s Plumbing, chairperson; Gail Ruppe of APG Media, vice chair; Bill Caughey of Edward Jones, secretary; and Ralph Twilley of Shore United Bank, treasurer.
Palmer, who ran the awards ceremony, said for the past 37 years the Queen Anne’s County Chamber of Commerce has helped the community, and the recognitions were a way to give thanks to individuals who “make this a great place.”
Jesse Parks with KRM Development received the Business Leader of the Year Award, Pasquale and Angelina DiDonato of Mallard Construction Group received the Lifetime Achievement Award, the Bay Area Association of Realtors received the Community Outreach Award, and Eric Hoffman with the
Holiday Inn Express received the Volunteer of the Year Award.
Pasquale DiDonato, who was thankful to receive the award, credited his family and staff for the achievements they had received and asked each to stand up to be recognized during the ceremony.
“I get all the credit like a quarterback, but that’s my team over there,” said DiDonato, who was tricked into coming to the event because he thought someone else was receiving the award. “They should get the award, but I’ll keep it.”
Though DiDonato’s construction company created beautiful and commercial and living complexes on Kent Island, served in the military and created more than 100 jobs over the years, Palmer said his outpouring of kindness to the community was one of the most important works he had completed while in the county.
After the awards ceremony, a cocktail hour was held prior to the Business Expo. During the Business Expo, Queen Anne’s County residents had the opportunity to speak with potential employers and learn about various businesses in the county. Booths were set up and employees were ready to answer questions and give out information to those attending the free business opportunity.
For more information about the Chamber of Commerce, visit www.qaccham ber.com.
Pasquale and Angelina DiDonato of Mallard Construction Group, winners of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Chamber of Commerce, stand with family and staff after the ceremony on Oct. 19 at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club.