2023 Small Business Summit

Official Awards Nomination Form

Submission Deadline: Friday, March 31, 2023

Each year the DC Chamber of Commerce honors the success of small businesses who have contributed to the business and economic growth of our community. As valued Chamber members and community partners, we encourage you to submit nominations in any or all six of the award categories. Participation in the awards program is a great experience for both the business owner and employees as well. The awards will be announced and presented on May 9, 2023 at the Small Business Summit luncheon. Nominations will be evaluated based on information provided in applications. The award categories are:

  • Small Business of the Year
  • Small Business Person of the Year
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Non-Profit Organization of the Year
  • Small Business Champion of the Year
  • Women in Business Champion of the Year


  1. Has NOT been a DC Chamber Small Business award recipient in the past 3 years.
  2. A representative from the business must be present at the event to win.
  3. Must meet the individual category criteria outlined for specific award for which the business is being nominated.
  4. Nominator must be a DC Chamber member and must complete nomination section on the application.
  5. A business may self-nominate, or another individual may nominate the business in one or more of the categories above. Separate applications must be submitted for each award category.


The form below needs to be completed along with requested documentation. Only applications submitted via this form will be accepted. Incomplete applications will not be considered. All nominations will be kept confidential.

For more information, please contact Natalie Harris at nha[email protected].


  • Recognition in the Chamber’s Choice Awards & Gala program book.
  • An award to showcase at their place of business.
  • Notification to the press.
  • A feature on our website rotating banner.
  • Chamber website and social media announcing winners.

Save the Date May 9, 2023
Small Business Summit
Walter E. Washington Convention Center


Person or Company to be Nominated

File upload requirements
  • Nominee’s resume (or list of accomplishments if nominating a company).
  • Two (2) professional letters of recommendation for the nominee.

Name of Person or Company Submitting Application and/or Contact Person


All nominees must:

  • Have between 1 and 100 employees (except Small Business Champion of the Year).
  • Have been profitable and/or demonstrating fiscal responsibility and adequate capitalization over the past two years.
  • Have been in business for a minimum of three successive years by current ownership.
  • Be independently owned and operated (cannot be a division of, a franchisee, branch, licensee and/or subsidiary of another company/organization).
  • Include nominee’s resume (or list of accomplishments if nominating a company).
  • Submit two (2) professional letters of recommendation for the nominee.
  • Describe the nominee’s involvement with the Chamber and how Chamber membership has contributed to the improvement of the business (education, networking, benefits, advocacy, etc.).


Small Business of the Year
Nominee must:

  • Be locally-owned and privately-held, with less than 100 employees – FTEs.
  • Demonstrate outstanding skills in meeting business goals and objectives, serving customers and providing quality work environment for employees that promotes employee growth, recognition and work/life balance in a multi-generational workforce.
  • Demonstrate how the company has built and maintained its leadership role in the DC business community through involvement of its executives and employees.
  • Demonstrate how the company makes a significant impact on the economy and local workforce in light of its relative size and resources (Please cite specific examples).

Small Business Person of the Year
Nominee must:

  • Be the Founder, Owner, CEO, or President of a local company or companies, (company or companies must have fewer than 100 employees).
  • Possess demonstrated visionary and leadership attributes.
  • Have demonstrated consistent profitable growth and creation of new jobs sustained over a period of time.
  • Demonstrate positive social and/or economic impact and active involvement in the community. (Please cite examples of corporate citizenship).

Young Entrepreneur of the Year
Nominee must:

  • Be under 35 years of age at the time of the nomination submission.
  • Be the Founder, Owner, CEO, or President of a company.
  • Demonstrate evidence of success as measured by sales and profits.
  • Demonstrate a high level of entrepreneurial spirit, leadership, perseverance and creativity necessary for long-term business success.
  • Have increased employment opportunities created by business. 

Non-Profit Organization of the Year
Nominee must:

  • Be a District of Columbia based 501(c) charitable organization.
  • Have shown outstanding commitment to working in close partnership with the business community to achieve the desired results over the past three years.
  • Provide quantitative benefits of sustained significant contributions to the community.
  • Show ongoing stability of management, staff, board, fiscal operations and community support to achieve the vision and mission of the organization.
  • Spend at least 80% of budget on program expenses.
  • Be a recognized leader that has demonstrated excellence in the non-profit community in successfully using its mission and resources to improve the quality of life and business in the District of Columbia.

Small Business Champion of the Year
(This category can include large corporate/agency organizations and others who champion partnerships with diverse individuals and businesses)
Nominee should:

  • Be a company that has demonstrated outstanding leadership in advocating for and supporting the inclusion of MBEs in their business practice and reports significant MBE spend and inclusion, or
  • Work closely with qualified firms to promote their economic stability and help them develop the technical, administrative and managerial expertise to compete successfully for private, local and federal contracts.
  • Actively support legislative or regulatory actions designed to help and/or raise awareness of issues that affect small businesses.

Women in Business Champion of the Year
Nominee must:

  • Have demonstrated and personified the highest level of professional excellence in her business or profession and has devoted time and energy to the community in a meaningful way.
  • Be an individual who has fulfilled a commitment to the advancement of women’s business ownership through voluntary efforts to strengthen the role of women business owners within the community.
  • Advocate for the women-owned business community through active support of legislative or regulatory actions.
  • Work to increase business and financial opportunities for women through legal, financial, or managerial assistance to enhance women’s entrepreneurship.