DiDonatos win life­time award for achieve­ment

Jesse Parks named Busi­ness Leader of Year

Record Observer - - News - By MIKE DAVIS mdavis@kibay­times.com

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.

PHOTO BY MIKE DAVIS

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.

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