The Greater Bluffton Chamber of Commerce recently unveiled the new logo for the upcoming 2015 Bluffton Business Awards. The awards will be determined through a nominating process that is currently underway.

Local graphic designer, musician and creative Trevor Harden won with his submission.

Harden will be acknowledged during the Bluffton Ball in January. More of his work can be seen at www.harden-creative.com

The Chamber has been accepting nominations for the business and individual awards and is looking for more members of the Greater Bluffton community to get involved by submitting nominations.

“We hope our task will be difficult due to the significant quantity and quality of nominations that are submitted,” said awards chair Ron Gray. Nominations may be submitted to recognize highly respected businesses and individuals in for-profit, non-profit, educational and civic roles throughout the Greater Bluffton community.

The inaugural Bluffton Business Awards will be presented in January at the Bluffton Ball. Following are the 10 award categories:

  • Business of the Year: There will be two awards, one for a business with more than 10 employees and one for a business with 10 or fewer employees.
  • Regional Economic Impact Award
  • Non-Profit Organization of the Year
  • Business Startup of the Year
  • Outstanding Person of the Year
  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Professional Education and Development Person of the Year
  • Good Heart Award
  • Rookie of the Year
  • Memorial Award

Honorees do not have to be a chamber of commerce member, and need only to live or work in 29909, 29910, 29927 or 29936 zip codes. An online submission form is available at bit.ly/BBAs2015. Nominations will be accepted through Nov. 30.

“With 500 members in our chamber and almost 2,500 business licenses in Bluffton, it is exciting to have business awards that focus on our unique heritage,” said Shellie West, executive director of the Bluffton Chamber. “We want to recognize those businesses and people that make the Greater Bluffton area an exciting, vibrant growing business community. Our charter serves the Greater Bluffton area, so we are accepting submissions from neighboring areas and have a special focus on regional impact.”

In addition, the chamber is still accepting art to represent the 2015 theme of “Growth” for the awards themselves. This contest will be going through November. The awards have been colloquially dubbed “The Golden Oysters,” and artists should keep that in mind as they create an award entry.

Artists should live or work in the zip codes 29909, 29910, 29927 or 29936 to submit an entry.

Bluffton Chamber officials believed the art contests would be a way to showcase local talent. The announcement of the logo is the first step, with the award logo to follow in December.

For more information, email info@blufftonchamberofcommerce.org.