Oro Valley Chamber Awards

Speaking in front of hundreds of fellow community members, founder of the Music & Dance Academy Nina Tishkevich said that every successful business starts with a great idea. Once that concept is established, she said the right people must follow. Whether it is individuals working in the business, the customers or supporters, Tishkevich said having a strong team is vital.

“I would like to say that this country is a country of possibilities, a country of opportunities and supportive, open and kind people,” said the Soviet-born business owner, who emigrated to the United States in 1992. “I would just like to thank all of you for giving me this opportunity—as a country—to have a business, to invest in education and into the community. I will say a modest investment, but we are doing our best and we are doing everything we can.”

That commitment to bettering the community and creating an environment of support is just one of the qualities of Tishkevich’s academy which netted the organization a Pinnacle Award in the small business category at the 2016 Annual Meeting and Pinnacle Awards Breakfast of the Greater Oro Valley Chamber of Commerce. 

Held at the Hilton El Conquistador Golf & Tennis Resort, the event included members and representatives from local and state government, the first responder community and hundreds of individuals affiliated with the chamber.

Whether hosting major events like the Town of Oro Valley’s state of the town address, election candidate forums or fundraising events or more focused occasions like social mixers or monthly meetings with the Oro Valley mayor and town manager, the chamber of commerce has continued maintain a strong physical presence throughout the region.

Much more than an organization designed to bring people together, the chamber also works to promote and improve upon the 

interests of its more than 400 members, the business community. 

The chamber sponsors ribbon cutting and groundbreaking events to promote new businesses, maintains a presence on the town’s general plan committee, champions the “Shop Oro Valley” campaign and lobbies in the interest of developing a stronger businesses environment for the future.

The chamber also recently celebrated the expansion of its premises to include an larger entry space, a step in its ongoing mission to become the town’s official visitors’ center.

“We’ve made huge progress, tremendous, the chamber for the past two years has done an amazing job,” said Elhadj Ndoye with the National Bank of Arizona and incoming chamber chairman. “But let’s face it—we’ve still got a lot of work to do and my goal is to build on that, keep working hard and push so that we can build on that success earlier and I know with the community and us working together here’s the thing —we’re not doing it alone … We need you as a community; we need to hear from you, we need you guys to let us know what is going on and what we can do to help and together as a community we will build a better future.”

The morning awards concerned far more than the accomplishments of the chamber as a whole, but also the deeds of its membership. Honors were given out in seven different categories: small, medium and large business, non-profit, community leader and the Legacy Award.

Regardless of the size or scope of the businesses, each was an example of what good character and a strong sense of commitment can bring about in businesses. 

Sitting atop a pinnacle of achievement were the three women nominated for the Legacy Award, co-founders of Casa de la Luz Hospice Lynette Jaramillo and Agnes Poore, and Sue Trinacty, founder of the Sunshine School.

In light of the immense dedication shown by each woman to help both the most young and old of the community, all three women received the award.

Despite the differences in their professions, one common thread closely tied the successes of all three women together. None were ever working to create “a legacy,” but instead just to make the world a better place in the best ways they know how.

Though only a handful of businesses made it to the podium to accept an award, every nominee—and member of the chamber—was recognized for their work to create a better place to live locally in the greater Oro Valley region. To continue with that mission, chamber president and CEO Dave Perry made one simple request.

“My request is to look around and get to know each other and ask each other for help and do business with one another because if you all do that, then every boat rises in this room and this chamber becomes stronger than ever.”


All Nominees

Small Business: Arizona Hearing Specialists, Body Works Pilates, Class Commercial Furnishings, Music & Dance Academy, Northwest Pet Clinic, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Title Boxing Club, Tucson Asphalt and Vistoso Automotive.

Mid-size Business: BrakeMax Car Care Centers and Cadden Community Management.

Large Business: Pima Federal Credit Union and BAYADA Home Health Care.

Non-profit: Amphitheater Public Schools Foundation and The Forgotten Children.

Community Leader: Splendido at Rancho Vistoso and Friends of the Oro Valley Public Library.

Legacy Award: Lynette Jaramillo and Agnes Poore, Casa de la Luz Hospice; Sue Trinacty, Sunshine School in Oro Valley.

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