SOUTH PORTLAND — The South Portland Economic Development Committee is seeking nominations for its annual awards night, which will take place in January 2022. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 9.

The city’s 2021 Annual Business & Economic Development Awards is looking for businesses that are leading the community “forward,” announced the committee.

The South Portland Food Cupboard received the Impact Award last year from the South Portland Economic Development Committee. The award is for a business or organization that had a significant impact on improving or stabilizing economic conditions in the city despite the pandemic. Courtesy photo/Tess Parks

“We ask you to take a few minutes to think about the South Portland businesses that have continued to demonstrate perseverance, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit across our community and beyond when looking at this year’s award categories,” the committee said.

Categories for the 2021 awards include “New Business of the Year Award,” “Business Leader of the Year Award,” “Small Business of the Year Award,” “Business of the Year Award,” “Santo ‘Sam’ DiPietro Community Impact Award” and the “SoPo Sustainability Award,” South Portland Economic Development said.

The “Santo ‘Sam’ DiPietro Community Impact Award reflects a business’s ability to improve the city, the committee said.

“Nominees for this award can be an individual, business, agency, organization, community or nonprofit corporation, which has gone above and beyond to make the South Portland business community and the community as a whole a better place to live, work, and locate a business,” South Portland Economic Development said. “Consideration may include expanding and/or diversifying the workforce, improvements to health and environmental sustainability, and/or other contributions.”

The SoPo Sustainability Award nominees are businesses who prioritize sustainable methods and put in an effort to positively change the environment, the committee said.

“Practices include but are not limited to waste reduction, pollution mitigation, clean energy adoption, water conservation, tree planting, sustainable materials utilization, LEED/Well construction, sourcing locally produced food and products, supporting employee initiatives, and restoration/net positive activities,” the committee said.

The deadline to submit nominations is Nov. 9. To submit a business nominations, visit

For a printed copy of the form, email [email protected]

“Nominees must be located in South Portland, produce high-quality goods or services, treat their employees well and be good community partners,” the announcement said. “The EDC Awards Committee will review all nominations and provide its recommendations to the full EDC for its review and approval.”

Last year, the focus of the awards night revolved around businesses who were able to adapt through the pandemic’s many changes, with categories like “COVID Pivot Pioneer” and “Heroes Helping Heroes.” Seven South Portland businesses received recognition and praise for their efforts during difficult and uncertain times.

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