Thursday, December 17, 2020

Congratulations to our Community Award Winners!

The Small Biz Thoughts Technology Community meets by Zoom every Thursday. And on the Third Thursday of every month we have our official "Monthly Meeting." Today, we announced the winners of our annual Community Awards for 2020.

We had quite a lot of great people to choose from. We have many very active members and Community leaders. But we finally picked the winners. With no further delay - here they are:

Our Community Member of the Year for 2020 is Laine Kohama from Giga Island. Laine has been an active member from the minute he joined. He attends almost every class, every call, every Roundtable, and every other thing we do. In addition, he always participates fully, offering advice and asking questions.

At one point, he didn't show up for two meetings in a row and Kara emailed him to make sure he was okay. Laine's response was that he was too busy with new clients - thanks to what he learned in the Community.

Congratulations, Laine!

Our Community Leader of the Year for 2020 is Amy Babinchak. Like Laine, Amy attends almost every meeting. Amy is a worldwide leader in the IT community, and we know she has a full calendar. So we're honored that she would make our Community a priority.

In addition to simply showing up, Amy gives us great advice and is always very transparent about how she has built her company over the last twenty years. When folks ask for special information or attention, she always steps up. I guess the same qualities that made her a Microsoft MVP also made her a great leader in our Community.

Congratulations, Amy!

Last but not least, our Small Biz Thoughts Employee of the Year is Kara Schoonveld. Kara is our Community Manager and primary web developer. In 2020, she has achieved an amazing collection of milestones. I haven't counted them all, but I think she made major revisions to about twenty of our web sites this year, including totally revising our store and the Community site itself.

Kara is always quick to help members with all requests, large or small. We have a group email. More often than not, if I reply to a member request, I get an email saying that Kara already took care of it. And just in case anyone is wondering: Kara really enjoys working with the Community.

And somehow, in the middle of all that, and in the middle of a pandemic, she moved across country to Michigan this year. And I doubt that any member noticed that she was "offline" for the move.

Congratulations, Kara!

We really do have an amazing Community. I personally thank all of our members, especially those who show up week after week for our "Community Confab" calls. We started those calls in March when the economy was shut down. I wanted to make sure that members had a place to connect with others and help each other during the unusual circumstances. Due to popular demand, we have continued those calls all year.

If you haven't joined us yet, please check it out. I posted a video to talk about how we can help you in 2021. See

You can also check out what we have to offer at

If you have questions, post them here or on the video. Or email me.

Congratulations again to this year's winners! I look forward to a great year-end and an amazing 2021.


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