The Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business delegation poses for a photo on the roof of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s building in Washington, D.C. at the Blue Ribbon ceremony in 2013.

The Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business delegation poses for a photo on the roof of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s building in Washington, D.C. at the Blue Ribbon ceremony in 2013.

The Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce has nominated 13 small businesses for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business of the Year campaign.

Last year, the Chamber had seven Blue Ribbon Small Business winners — more than any other Chamber in the nation. Applications to be a Blue Ribbon Small Business winner are received by the U.S. Chamber from around the nation and the best 100 small businesses are selected from criteria on their applications.

Winning the award provides national recognition for small businesses and is an asset in building their brands locally, nationally and internationally. Small businesses are judged on how they began their business, their business plan, financial results, how they address obstacles, employee practices, including benefits and how they recruit and retain employees, community involvement, customer relations and how they retain customers and grow new customers, and their entrepreneurial spirit.

The 13 businesses nominated in 2014 by the Irving Chamber are Cooksey Communications, David Mullis Insurance Agency, Elemental Methods, Express Employment Professionals, FigDesign, Glory House Catering, Irving Cares,  Kerri Miene State Farm Insurance, La Margarita Restaurant, Larsen Dye Associates Architects, MATsolutions,  MITO Financial and Southwest Office Systems.

Chris Wallace, president and CEO of the Irving Chamber, said the applications prepared by the nominees are some of the strongest he has seen in the years that the Chamber has been involved with the competition.

“I fully expect to have multiple Blue Ribbon winners and could see a national winner from these nominees,” Wallace said.

Blue Ribbon winners will be announced Feb. 19 and Regional winners will be announced March 19. The national Small Business of the Year will be announced June 12 at the U.S. Chamber’s Small Business Summit in Washington, D.C.

Irving currently has 16 Blue Ribbon Small Businesses, and two have moved on to become regional winners for the Small Business of the Year — Mammen Glass & Mirror and Larsen Dye Associates Architects.

Irving’s thriving small businesses attracted MSNBC to the city several years ago to determine what Irving is doing to have such successful small businesses.

For  Irving Chamber news and events, visit irvingchamber.com.

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