The Awards

Excellence in Service

Awarded to a company that has provided steadfast customer and/or community service. Honorees in this category have demonstrated a management team commitment to excellence, an ability to innovatively solve problems, and have embraced a public service orientation. The award may be given to a public or private business or a non-profit organization.

Entrepreneur of the Year

Awarded to an individual who has made a career of successful entrepreneurial endeavors, by founding, building and leading profitable and dynamic businesses. Honorees have inspired others with their vision, leadership, and achievement and have demonstrated extraordinary success in business or technological innovation while exhibiting high ethical standards.

Company of the Year

Awarded to a company that is successfully achieving its objectives, is a market leader, and demonstrates profitability and strong growth. The following criteria are considered when selecting the Company of the Year: technology or product development, maturity of product or business, growth in revenue or earnings, financial performance, number of customers and significant customers, attraction of outside investors, impact on the Santa Barbara community, emerging markets strategy, and new products launches.

Executive of the Year

Awarded to an outstanding senior executive who has a passion for working with the local community, has increased the profitability of his or her company, and, often, has strengthened its market presence. He or she has shown leadership skills in the areas of product or service, development and benefits, team management and guidance, and overall community service.

Pioneer Award

Awarded to an individual for outstanding leadership or innovations in the local South Coast business or technology community over a long period of time. He or she has been a visionary leader and has played a critical role in driving a company or companies towards specific goals. Honorees have made a substantial long-term impact on business and/or society.

Rising Stars 

Awarded to an entrepreneur or company with fewer than 100 employees that has demonstrated product-market fit by generating at least $1 million in customer revenue and/or governmental grants, or has raised $2 million or more in investor capital. Emphasis is placed on recognizing entrepreneurs and company founders from traditionally underrepresented groups within our community.