New Philadelphia, Ohio - The Tuscarawas County Chamber of Commerce is announcing its 60th annual awards banquet honorees. 

Kent State University at Tuscarawas is the recipient of the group's Large Business of the Year award for organizations with more than 50 employees, and Whitemyer Advertising of Zoar was selected for Small Business of the Year recognition.

Kent State University at Tuscarawas continues to grow under the leadership of Dean and Chief Administrative Officer Dr. Brad Bielski. The campus currently employs 110 full-time and 140 part-time faculty members and staff. The campus recently completed a celebration of its 50th anniversary at its University Drive NE location in New Philadelphia. 

Bielski says university officials are pleased to receive this recognition. “It completes what has been a very special year for our campus,” he says.

Owned by Tom Simmelink, Lisa Geers, Dan Mehling and Ty Simmelink, Whitemyer Advertising has grown tremendously since its start in 1971 in a log cabin in Zoar. The firm assists a wide range of clientele from manufacturers to medical facilities to nonprofit organizations.

Since the transition to new ownership in 2016, the agency has deepened its longtime commitment to creative thinking and client service while also encouraging employees to volunteer their time with various nonprofit organizations and community events.

The Tuscarawas County Future Leaders of Tomorrow will receive the Organization of the Year award. The group was nominated by Tuscarawas County Commissioner Joe Sciarretti. 

In his submission letter, Sciarretti says: "The organization is providing young people [with] an opportunity to gain hands-on educational leadership experiences that will ignite their passion to be change makers in our

Adam Hall, principal of the Strasburg Middle School/High School, has been chosen as this year’s Educator of the Year. His nomination was submitted by Strasburg-Franklin Schools Superintendent Cindy Brown and community member Dawn Delcoma. 

Brown says Hall has "transformed the school at Strasburg into a student-centered atmosphere where students are the first priority in each and every day.” 

The nomination also cites a number of creative programs Hall has implemented to engage and inspire students.

Selected as this year’s Tuscarawas Valley Safety Council Member of the Year is Cleveland Clinic Union Hospital. Hospital employees have worked 1,170,476 hours without a lost time accident in 2018.

The honorees will receive their awards at the Chamber’s 60th Annual Awards Banquet on Wednesday, January 23rd, at the Schoenbrunn Inn and Conference Center in New Philadelphia. The Citizen of the Year, Hall of Fame award recipient, Volunteer of the Year, and the Tourism Ambassador of the Year will also be announced that evening. Reservations are necessary for the banquet. For more information, call the Tuscarawas County Chamber of Commerce at 330-343-4474. 

Sponsors for the event include Baker Florist, Boltaron, Buckeye Career Center, Central Payment, Cleveland Clinic Union Hospital, Copeco, Inc., First Federal Community Bank, First National Bank of Dennison, Habitat for Humanity ReStore, Kent State University at Tuscarawas, McInturf Realty, Meteor Sealing Systems, Moore & Neidenthal, Inc., Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District, My Museum Tattoo Studio, Performance Additives of America, Schauer Group, Inc., Schoenbrunn Inn and Conference Center, Starlight Enterprises, Inc., The Budget Newspaper, The
Commercial & Savings Bank, Triple “S” Energy Management LLC, the Tuscarawas County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and the Tuscarawas Valley Safety Council.