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Alaska State Chamber of Commerce Presents 2010 North Star Award to Ann Ringstad

The Alaska State Chamber presented its annual recognition awards Tuesday evening at the Chairs' Banquet during the organization's 51st Annual Conference and Trade Show. Awards presented were the William A. Egan Outstanding Alaskan of the Year, the Bill Bivin Small Business of the Year, the Local Chamber of the Year and the North Star Award.

The Alaska State Chamber of Commerce presents the North Star Award to an individual or organization in Alaska, who through a special project, action, or concern, developed or pursued the endeavor for the betterment of all Alaska residents. These individuals or organizations provide a significant contribution to the future of the Great State of Alaska.

In the undertaking of a successful project, an individual or business must find the way to which goals and objectives are achieved. With no leadership efforts or guidance, projects or ideas are lost and will not find their way to implementation. Individuals or organizations who dedicate their time and energy to leading the way to the completion of a goal or project is recognized as a North Star - the individual or organization serves as a guiding star and leads to the successful completion of the endeavor.

This year's recipient has truly been a guiding star. For more than three years, the State Chamber Board of Directors discussed the need to bring heightened awareness to the Benefits of Business. In 2009, after hearing a presentation about Washington Business Week, Ann Ringstad was so impressed with the presentation and its positive impact on high school students that she volunteered to be a Company Advisor at Washington Business Week's program at Pacific Lutheran University in July of 2009. In August of 2009, she went back to Washington and participated in the graduation ceremony for the program at Gonzaga University. Convinced that she had found a winner, she brought the concept to the Alaska State Chamber Board and with their approval began the process of developing a Business Week program in Alaska.

Ann has devoted hundreds of hours of time and in doing so had the full support of her employer at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. With the assistance of Washington Business Week, the financial support of Alaska State Chamber members Tesoro, BP, Icicle Seafoods, TOTE, State Farm and countless others, Ann spearheaded the movement to bring the inaugural Alaska Business Week program to life.

The Alaska Business Week program has explained the benefits of business to Alaska students. The program should and will go forward in future years to introduce other Alaska students to the benefits of business.

The Alaska State Chamber recognizes Ann Ringstad as the 2010 North Star Award recipient, the guiding light for the inaugural Alaska Business Week program.

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