GMSVC honors local businesses at event

Cabinet photo by ALAN GREENWOOD Liz Calabria, president and CEO of the Greater Merrmack-Souhegan Valley Chamber of Com,merce, opens the proceedings at the group's annual awards dinner on MOnday at Hampshire Hills in Milford.

MILFORD – With a full house there for the celebration, the Greater Merrimack-Souhegan Valley Chamber of Commerce had its annual Awards Dinner on Monday night at Hampshire Hills in Milford.

Mike Morin, longtime Telegraph columnist, author and former radio host, served as the evening’s guest speaker.

Additionally, ceremonies included the passing of the gavel from outgoing Chamber Board Chair Kimberlee Hemmer to incoming Board Chair Andrew Cirrone. Scholarship awards were presented to Benjamin Kilgore of Milford High School and Aidan Ponder from Merrimack High School.

Award winners included:

Business Leader of the Year Christina Hurley, the founder and executive director of Less Leg More Heart. Hurley, herself a below-the-knee amputee, has more than a decade of experience working in in acute care medicine and vascular surgery and wound care.Less Leg More Heart is a non-profit aimed at helping people transitioning into the disabled living.

Business of the Year College Bound Movers, which has received 4.7 out of five stars in Google reviews, a 4.6 out of five stars on Facebook, and an A-plus accreditation with the Better Business Bureau. In 2008, founder and owner Edward Smith started a non-profit, CBM Cares, which has raised more than $300,000 in donations for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Nashua and Greater Salem, and the Souhegan Valley Boys and Girls Club. It has been active in fundraising for upwards of seven other non-profits.

Volunteer of the Year Janet Langdell, long time officer and board director for the Milford Rotary Club, is a lifelong resident of the Souhegan Valley who has organized many area fundraising efforts. For the past 13 years she has been the lead organizer for the Milford Rotary Club Swim Meet, which draws participants from throughout New England. Professionally she has split her time between work in the community health and the auctioneer services industry.

The Non-Profit of the Year went to Opportunity Networks, which supports local residents local residents who have developmental and acquired disabilities. Operating for more than 40 years, Opportunity Networks has worked to provide a safe, productive program for every individual. It had increased service revenues from $1 million to $4 million over the past decade.

Small Business of the Year is Cardoza Flooring began operations in 2003, replacing another such business located on the Milford Oval. Michael Cardoza has been joined by his brother Jim Bethel and operations director Steve Wowianko, who joined the business in 2004. Cardoza’s son-in-law Jamey Ouellette began overseeing installation projects in 2010.