San Diego small business owners awarded for community heroism
Published - 12/25/19 - 12:00 PM | 6376 views | 0 0 comments | 75 75 recommendations | email to a friend | print
San Diego County’s growing community of small businesses recently gathered in North Park to celebrate local business owners going beyond their bottom line to invest in the livelihood of their employees and the health of their community.

Assemblymember Todd Gloria and Councilmember Chris Ward joined Business For Good San Diego, the nonprofit uniting small business owners to drive policy that improves communities, at its annual celebration to introduce the five awardees. 

According to Business For Good, the awards recognize outstanding social responsibility within the business community and demonstrate the role that local business owners play in making San Diego County a more equitable and sustainable place.

“Tonight, we celebrate the contributions of some dynamic business owners who have committed to changing the narrative about the voice of business in San Diego,” says Mikey Knab, Business For Good board chair and director of operations of Ponce’s Restaurant in Kensington and Del Sur. “These heroes have given their time and leveraged their reputations to support the long term health of their employees and their communities.”

The 2019 Business For Good Annual Awards went to the following:

• Housing and Homelessness Hero Award: Brad Keiller, owner of Nomad Donuts (North Park)

Keiler showed his employees, customers, and community how businesses can treat all people with dignity when he stood up for a homeless man outside his store in response to a negative Yelp review.

• High Road Employer Award: Jay Buys, owner of Visceral (Hillcrest)

Buys demonstrated his commitment to his employees by covering 100 percent of their healthcare, matching California-state parental leave, supporting 40 hours of volunteer time, and matching charitable donations made by his team.

• Immigration Advocate Award: Lindsay LaShell, owner of Diamond + Branch Marketing Group (North Park)

LaShell’s digital marketing agency created the Welcoming San Diego website to support the City of San Diego’s initiative to advance the civic, social, and economic integration of immigrants and refugees.

• Environmental Champion Award: Dr. Cindy J Lin, CEO, and co-founder of HOVE Social Good Intelligence (San Diego)

Lin’s innovative approach to data and design empowered her company to measure the tangible impact of local efforts to improve public health and create a more sustainable environment.

• Environmental Champion Award: Michael Torti, vice president of C&M Motors, Inc. (National City)

Torti exemplified the role businesses play in creating a more sustainable home by advocating for the City of San Diego’s single-use plastics ordinance and expanding the Ocean Friendly Restaurant program, which he co-created in 2014.

Business For Good San Diego is a community that unites more than 80 business owners to drive policy that improves communities countywide. Money raised from its annual celebration will go to increase capacity for the nonprofit organization as it grows its membership and empowers more businesses to advocate for stronger local policies that benefit the environment, health, community, and quality of life for all people in San Diego County. To learn more, visit businessforgoodsd.com.

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