Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce Announces 2015 Small Business Person of the Year and 2015 ATHENA Award Recipient

Published Thursday, April 16, 2015 10:00 am

Bowling Green, Ky. (April 16, 2015) – The Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce today awarded two prestigious awards to outstanding business people in our community.  

Small Business Person of the Year

Ed Griffin of Griff’s Deli was awarded the prestigious Small Business Person of the Year Award, sponsored by Citizens First. “Small businesses are extremely important to our community and we are truly thankful that Bowling Green has such a variety of business owners to honor. Griff’s Deli clearly stands out as a leader in our superior circle of small businesses,” Chamber Board Chairman Tommy Adams said.

The Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce has annually named a community member the Small Business Person of the Year since 1985. The award recognizes a business leader who owns and operates a for-profit company that employs 100 or fewer full-time employees, who has invested his or her own money in that small business, who has experienced recent business growth and who is involved in the development and growth of the Bowling Green community. The three nominees for the 2015 Small Business Person of the Year were:

Ed Griffin, Griff’s Deli

David Paschall, Batteries Plus Bulbs

Robert Ramsey, Container World Inc.


“As always, our selection committee faced an undeniably tough decision this year. Our small business community is of the highest quality, and we are so proud to honor those leaders through this award. Small businesses are invaluable to all those who live and work in this community,” Chamber President and CEO Ron Bunch said.


Robbin Taylor of Western Kentucky University was named the 30th recipient of the ATHENA Award, given by the Chamber and Martin Dodge Jeep Chrysler RAM. “This year’s group of nominees was very strong for an award that honors such positive role models. We believe Robbin Taylor exemplifies every quality of the ATHENA Award and we are proud she is such a vital asset to the Bowling Green community,” Adams said.

The Chamber, with the generous support of Martin Dodge Jeep Chrysler RAM, has honored local business people for contributing to the advancement of women in the workplace by presenting well-deserving business leaders with the ATHENA Award for the past 29 years. The prestigious ATHENA Award celebrates positive role models in the business world – more than 3,000 women and men to date – on local, state, national and international stages. The ATHENA Foundation is dedicated to recognizing individual leaders who have opened doors of opportunity for women in the workplace and beyond. The eight nominees for the award were:

Janette Reed Boehman, WBKO-TV

Ginger Cleary, State Farm Insurance

Lisa Dunn, U.S. Bank

Vicki Fitch, Bowling Green Area Convention & Visitors Bureau

Rebecca Adams Simpson

Anna Taylor, Farmers National Bank

Robbin Taylor, WKU

Shannon Vitale, Hilliard Lyons


Both award recipients will be honored at the Chamber’s Excellence Awards Luncheon on May 14 at the Knicely Conference Center. The event is the highlight of Small Business Appreciation Month and will feature both winners as keynote speakers. To attend the event, online registration is required at Individual tickets are $30, and tables of 10 are $300.  


About the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce:

Incorporated in 1935, the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce is a 5-Star Accredited Chamber by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and was named the 2009 Chamber of the Year by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives. As the fourth largest chamber in Kentucky, the Chamber serves as a premier business advocate for its more than 1,200 partners and is the driving force for economic development in South Central Kentucky. Its primary goals are to promote growth and success in the business community, reaching its small business partners and those in large industries alike. With leadership programs, governmental relations projects, educational initiatives and involvement opportunities, the Chamber aims to support the community and its neighbors in order to enhance the business climate and continue to grow the region.