Lawson’s Finest Liquids, Waitsfield, has been selected as the Vermont Business Magazine and the Vermont Chamber of Commerce for the 2020 Deane C. Davis Outstanding Business of the Year Award.
The award was presented by Lieutenant Governor Molly Gray on Monday afternoon, June 21, at Waterbury’s Dascomb Rowe Pavilion.
The other two contenders were Healthy Living Market of South Burlington and Union Mutual of Montpelier.
“We are honored to be awarded the Outstanding Vermont Business of 2020! It is humbling to be recognized for this honor among many esteemed prior winners. Since our founding in 2008 we have remained committed to ensuring vibrant communities -- starting with our staff, our neighbors and our environment through our employment practices and values-based business ethos,” said Karen Lawson, co-founder and chief creative officer.
“We are proud to continue Deane C. Davis’ legacy of community vitality through our Social Impact Program which provides donations to Vermont nonprofits that support food and economic security, environmental protection and sustainable recreation. Congratulations to our fellow finalists -- Healthy Living Market and Union Mutual Bank -- and thank you kindly to Vermont Business Magazine, the Vermont Chamber of Commerce and the judges’ panel for this prestigious award. A special appreciation goes to our employees who make us shine everyday with world class beer and service, she added.
“Lawson’s Finest Liquids has shown great merit for the Deane C. Davis Award. Like Davis himself -- former governor, president of National Life of Vermont and environmentalist -- Lawson’s Finest Liquids reflects Vermont’s diverse nature and, at the same time, radiates a savvy business sense and is a leader in the ever-growing Vermont craft brew industry,” commented John Boutin, publisher of Vermont Business Magazine.
“It is an honor to present Lawson’s Finest Liquids with this year’s prestigious Deane C. Davis Award. Lawson’s Finest embodies the Vermont values that make our businesses exceptional, through their environmental commitment, community investment and the care with which they approach their employees and business growth. Many great Vermont businesses were nominated this year. Lawson’s Finest stood out, even in a pool of accomplished nominees. Congratulations to Lawson’s Finest Liquids on their well-deserved receipt of this award,” said Betsy Bishop, president of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.
The annual award honors a Vermont business that shows an outstanding history of sustained growth while displaying an acute awareness of what makes Vermont unique. Named for the former governor of Vermont, the award was created 30 years ago by Vermont Business Magazine and the Vermont Chamber of Commerce to recognize and honor the state’s best companies.
Nominated businesses must have been based in Vermont for at least 10 years. Other criteria for the award include growth in sales or employment, commitment of company resources and employees to community involvement, recognition of the environment as an important natural and economic resource, and addressing employee interests to create a positive work environment.
The selection committee for the award finalists included Bishop and Boutin along with Cassie Polhemus, chief executive of the Vermont Economic Development Authority; Thomas Leavitt, president and chief executive of Northfield Savings Bank; and Nicole Junas Ravlin, president and chief executive officer of Junapr.