Wayne County’s best small businesses were recognized Thursday night during the Wayne County Chamber of Commerce’s virtual “annual banquet.”
The Small Business Center at Wayne Community College and the Chamber revealed the two winners of the 2019 “Small Business of the Year” and “Start-Up of the Year” awards in a video that replaced the usual annual gathering due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The Small Business of the Year Award honors the small business that has most demonstrated excellence in business practices, customer service, and community involvement. Other criteria include being a respected corporate citizen, exhibiting growth potential, and offering value to the community through either job creation or general positive image.
The Small Business of the Year is Go Go Berries LLC.
Go Go Berries, located on Corporate Drive in Goldsboro, creates dipped strawberries in a variety of flavors, edible arrangements, baked goods, and other desserts. It is owned by Everlena Eason.
In announcing the award, Dr. Thomas Walker, WCC president and the chamber’s 2021 chairman of the board, said that Eason is “known for adapting to the situation and coming up with creative alternatives to keep her business going. She has been taken down to low points and has come right back up with a win. Her tenacity along with her creativity and talent is the reason she is our winner.”
To qualify for Start-Up of the Year, nominees had to have opened their doors for the first time in either 2017 or 2018. To win, the business must have exhibited exceptional thoughtfulness and organization throughout the process of creating its business plan and seeing that plan through to fruition.
Spiron Solutions LLC was named the Start-Up of the Year.
Spiron Solutions, which is headquartered in Pikeville, provides practical solutions for business or organizational needs. Its services include meeting facilitation, strategic planning, personal branding, and leadership development.
Walker noted that Vanessa Spiron, owner of Spiron Solutions, “was a bit unsure if [she was] doing the right thing by thinking about giving up a full-time position.”
Spiron “is a very hard worker and is not afraid of a challenge and will take on a new opportunity with ease. She keeps her focus on what she wants her business to take on, but keeps family in mind as new opportunities present themselves,” Walker said.
“I am truly honored to be recognized as the Startup of the Year. Starting Spiron Solutions was a leap of faith for me, and I could not have done it without the Small Business Center at Wayne Community College and everyone who has supported me along the way. I love helping organizations develop their human capital and help their businesses grow,” Spiron said of the award and her business.
“They are both extraordinary examples of the entrepreneurship, talent, and spirit that makes our community special,” Walker said of Eason and Spiron.
“Although these were our award winners for 2019, I would say their tenacity, dedication, determination, adaptability and the fact that they are still continuing to thrive speaks for itself especially in a year like 2020,” Small Business Center Director Kim Gamlin said of both winners. “Continuing to move forward, think outside of the box, and persevere is the secret to success.”
The women were presented plaques and the business names will be added to a permanent plaque in the offices of the Wayne Business and Industry Center located at Wayne Community College.
The annual banquet video of which the award announcements were a part can be viewed at https://waynecountychamber.com/save-the-date-annual-banquet-2/.
The Small Business Center is the component of the Wayne Business and Industry Center that is dedicated to entrepreneurial development. The Center, which is part of the North Carolina Small Business Center Network, provides one-on-one consulting services, resources, and free seminars.