Heise Entrepreneurial Spirit Award
The Heise Entrepreneurial Spirit Award was named in honor of Helmuth and Evelyn Heise, founders of Will O' the Wisp and Wisp Resort, Maryland's only downhill ski resort. The Heise Award is given to one business owner each year that has shown similar entrepreneurial qualities. The criteria for nomination include the following:
- Open to business owners including partners/families that originated, developed, and/or significantly expanded business
- Willingness to take risks with possibility of losing all
- Involved in the community
- High ethical standards
- Nominee must be a member of the Chamber of Commerce
- Demonstrated leadership (through one or more of the following): 1) By overcoming a formidable problem that threatened the business’s existence 2) By showing business acumen through embarking on a creative, insightful or overlooked opportunity that makes important contributions to Garrett County’s business environment 3) Through substantive community impact
The Heise Entrepreneurial Spirit Award Committee, composed of previous winners, will choose 3 finalists and present them to the Board with a recommended winner. Then the Chamber Board of Directors will choose the winner. The winner of the annual award is announced during the Annual Chamber Dinner and Meeting on Thursday, June 8, 2017.
You can make a nomination for the 2017 Heise Award by using the online form below or by downloading the form HERE and faxing it to 301-334-8073, emailing it to firstname.lastname@example.org, or mailing it to Garrett County Chamber of Commerce,15 Visitors Center Drive, McHenry, MD 21541. Nomination submissions due by EOD on Friday, April 7.
2016 Heise Award Winner
We are very pleased to announce the winner of the 2016 Heise Entrepreneurial Spirit Award is Robert Heilig of Heilig's Plumbing & Electrical, LLC.
Before Rob moved west to Garrett County in 1980 he had both previously served in the United States Marine Corp (1974-1978) as well as worked as an Apprentice Plumber from 1978. Upon arriving in Garrett County Rob started working as a service technician for AD Naylor Company where he specialized in Plumbing and Electrical servicing and installations. He was employed there for 12 years until he started his own company “Heiligs, Plumbing, Heating and Electrical” in April of 1992. In building his Business Rob has obtained and maintained licensing not only as a Master Plumber, but also a Master Electrician in both Maryland and West Virginia as well as his Maryland MHIC license. As Robs Company grew so has his commitment to his employees, his customers and his community. He invested in a new Facility just outside of Oakland in 1999 as well as becoming a Certified Instructor and Board Member for ABC (Associated Builders and Contractors) and subsequently being appointed to the Maryland State Board of Master Electricians. He currently serves on the Garrett County Building Committee, the Garrett County Mechanical Association where he is both a member and President. In addition to his role in the company Rob ls also very involved in the community and with his family and friends. He is married to Diana Winter and has two daughters Lauren Heilig and Sarah Heilig. He is an active member of the following organizations: American Legion Post 71, VFW 10077, Oakland Elks 2481 and served as President of the Oakland Golf Club and Commandant of the Garrett County Detachment 1234 of the Marine Corps League. In his spare time Rob enjoys Traveling, hiking and almost any sporting event both viewing and participating. Although anyone who truly know Rob know that his true passion for relaxation are playing golf and spending time with his family, friends and Nike.
Past Recipients of the Heise Award
Heilig's Plumbing & Electrical, LLC
Halian & Associates Landscapes
Skip & Linda Carr
CLS Ventures, Inc.
Book Mark'et & Antique Mezannine
Phenix Technologies, Inc.
Savage River Lodge
Michael Deligatti, Sr.
Arrowhead, Garrett 8 Cinema, Uno Chicago Grill
Brenda's Pizzeria & Trader's Coffee House
Dave & Mimi Demaree
Demaree Inflatable Boats, Inc.
State Farm Insurace
Will & Sharon Roszell
Garrett Automotive Company
Jim Flanigan, Sr.
Johnny's Bait House
Bill's Marine Service
Jonathan 'Smiley' Kessler
Smiley's Pizzeria & Fun Zone
Golden Ambassador Award
Winners of the presitgious Autumn Glory Festival Golden Ambassador award have made major contributions to tourism in Garrett County and the Autumn Glory Festival. The winner of the Golden Ambassador award is announced at the Annual Autumn Glory Kick Off Reception.
The nomination form for the 2015 Golden Ambassador is now available. To nominate someone for this prestigious award, please complete the nomination form and return it by September 11 by emailing it to email@example.com, faxing it to 301.387.2080 attention Sarah or by mailing it to, or dropping it off at, The Garrett County CHamber of Commerce 15 Visitors Center Drive McHenry, MD 21541.
2015 Golden Ambassador
Mike Dreisbach and Jan Russell were named the 2015 Honorary Golden Ambassadors of the 48th Annual Autumn Glory Festival at the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Autumn Glory Kick-Off Reception on October 7, 2015. Garrett Regional Medical Center, a proud affiliate of WVU Medicine, was the sponsor of the 48th Annual Autumn Glory Festival.
Jan and Mike began a consulting firm, the Nature of Business, that helped businesses build workplace communities before they opened Savage River Lodge in 1999. Savage River Lodge is comprised of 18 cabins, eight luxury yurts and gourmet American cuisine restaurant with a Wine Spectator Award winning wine list and a myriad of opportunities for recreation. With Savage River Lodge established as a premier resort on the East Coast, Mike and Jan also opened Grant’s Mercantile in June 2014 and The Cornucopia Café in September 2015, both in Grantsville, Maryland. With their very newly formed business, Fronterra Resources, Mike and Jan are once again entering the consulting world with hospitality, restaurant, marketing, sustainability and recreation consulting. Fronterra Resources is also the managing and operations faction of the Savage River Lodge, The Cornucopia Café and Grant’s Mercantile.
Mike also serves on the Board and is the current President of Garrett Trails, a nonprofit volunteer organization dedicated to the development of a well-used network of high-quality, sustainable trails that provide access to Garrett County’s historic, municipal and environmental treasures which also link to trails outside the county. Jan serves on the Board of the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce where she has previously chaired the Membership and Hospitality committees. They are both involved with the Appalachian Culinary Alliance. Their innovation and investments have helped to drive the tourism industry in Garrett County.
Winners of the Golden Ambassador award have contributed to tourism in Garrett County and the Autumn Glory Festival.
Past Recipients of the Golden Ambassador
Mike Dreisbach & Jan Russell
Edwin S. Walthall
Asa M. McCain, Jr.
Theodore J. Lascaris
Ernest J. Gregg, Jr.
Dr. Alta E. Schrock
Helmuth M. Heise
R. Rudy, Jr.
Rev. I. Lynn Beckman
2016 Volunteer of the Year Winner
Of the more than 100 volunteers there is always someone that seems to go above and beyond the call of duty. Therefore, we annually present a Volunteer of the Year award to recognize an individual member’s outstanding service to your Garrett County Chamber of Commerce for a particular program year. This year’s recipient gave countless hours serving your Chamber and the community over the past 12 months. The 2015-2016 Volunteer of the Year is Jeremy Bittner of Railey Mountain Lake Vacations. Jeremy was not only a volunteer but he served in a leadership capacity spearheading one of the community’s largest and most important events. Our recipient attended regularly scheduled meetings and gave an incredible amount of time during this signature event. His dedication and commitment helped lead the event through a transition period and resulted in one of the best Autumn Glory Festivals ever.
Past Recipients of the Volunteer of the Year Award
Railey Mountain Lake Vacations, Chair of the Autumn Glory Festival Committee
1st United Bank & Trust, Chair of the Diplomat Committee
Mark Stutzman, Laura Stutzman, Leigh Clarke, Paula Yudelevit, Emily Newman Edwards, Clint McCabe, Jonathan Kessler
Branding Study Committee
Long & Foster Realty
Diplomat of the Year Award
The Diplomats act as greeters at Chamber events, deliver new member packets, deliver membership directories, participate in new member orientations, attend Ribbon Cuttings/Grand Openings/Ground Breakings and present First Dollar of Profit certificates to new businesses. The Diplomat must be employed by a Chamber Member or the owner of a member business, must have been a chamber member for at least one year and employed with their business for at least 6 months. For their efforts, the Diplomats have the opportunity to compete with each other for the title of Diplomat of the Year. The Diplomat of the Year Award was established in 2015.
The Diplomat of the Year is determined through a points system given for membership packet distribution, Business After Hours Attendance, Business Before Hours Attendance, Ribbon Cuttings, Ground Breakings, Grand Opening & First Dollar of Profit Presentation Attendance, Recruiting New Members and Distribution of the Community Profile & Membership Directory.
2016 Diplomat of the Year Winner
This year’s Diplomat of the year has attended 7 out of 10 Business After Hours, 2 out of 6 Business Before Hours, 3 out of 9 Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies, helped in the distribution of the Community Profile & Membership Directories, achieving a total of 186 points. We are very happy to present the honor of 2016 Diplomat of the Year to Patty Manown Mash, Pine Lodge Steakhouse.
Past Recipients of the Diplomat of the Year Award
Patty Manown Mash
Pine Lodge Steak House
First United Bank & Trust