Flaco Guapo Media, Jim Sánchez
Kayla French, Communications Director for the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce, contributor

SAN ANGELO – The San Angelo Chamber of Commerce hosted its 105th Annual Banquet on Thursday, March 4, 2021, at the First Financial Pavilion.
Among the highlights of the evening included accomplishments of the 2020 Chamber year from Board Chair Dr. Clifton Jones, a preview of 2021 goals from incoming Board Chair Shane Plymell. The grand finale of the evening concluded with the ceremonial naming of the 2020 Citizen of the Year, Matt Lewis, President/ CEO of the San Angelo Area Foundation.
Attendees enjoyed the musical talents of MKJazz, sponsored by UBS Financial Services.

Outgoing 2020 Chairman Dr. Clifton Jones made the following presentations:

Outstanding Member
Awarded to: First Financial Bank Chris Evatt is the President, CEO, and Chairman of First Financial Bank
The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic changed the face of business as we all know it. The key role they played in helped local businesses survive the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.

Outstanding Director
Awarded to: Randy Brooks
Following a successful career with Town and Country Food Stores, Randy Brooks is currently an entrepreneur in West Texas through BNB Ventures, which owns and operates the successful chain of Jack’s Convenience Stores and Which Wich sandwich shops in our area

Outstanding Chairman
Awarded to: Sherley Spears
In 2020, the Chamber’s Diversity Committee expanded on its programming and provided a series of workshops for the multitude of minority-owned small businesses in our community. Sherley Spears led the Diversity Committee to great success this past year.

Innovation Award
Awarded to: Senor Changs
In 2018, Adrian Soto transitioned his popular food truck, Senor Changs, to a successful brick-and-mortar restaurant. Since then, Senor Changs has become a San Angelo staple and crowd favorite. Senor Changs has not only grown to have two locations but was also one of the most innovative businesses during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chairman’s Award
Awarded to: COVID-19 Economic Resources Task Force
This year’s Chairman’s Award was presented to the organizations that came together and designed a comprehensive, community-based response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on local small businesses. On March 18, 2020, economic development partners in the Concho Valley formed the Economic Response and Recovery Task Force, led by Michael Looney (Vice President of Economic Development at the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce), Dave Erickson (Director at the ASU Small Business Development Center), and Guy Andrews (Director of Economic Development at the City of San Angelo Development Corporation).

Special Recognition Award
Awarded to: West Texas Moving Forward Conference
Each year the Chamber, along with a planning committee, organizes and hosts the West Texas Legislative Summit (WTLS.)
The West Texas Moving Forward team was led by Tricia Peterson, Events Director for the Chamber, Dr. Brook Dickison, Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at ASU, and Kayla French, Communications Director for the Chamber.

Special Merit Award
Awarded to: Diann Bayes and the San Angelo Convention & Visitors Bureau
Diann Bayes and her team in the San Angelo Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) helped to keep San Angelo moving forward during 2020. They still managed to secure the designation of #1 True Western Town of the year by True West Magazine.

Phil Neighbors Spirit of San Angelo Award
Awarded to: Jamie Rainey
This award is given to someone who helps to make our community a better place to live. It is named for the late Phil Neighbors, who served this city as the Chamber President and CEO for 10 years with distinction and dedication.

Retiring Directors – Service Awards
•    President Ronnie Hawkins
•    Rodney Mayberry
•    Sheryl Pfluger

2020 Citizen of the Year – Mr. Matt Lewis
The Citizen of the Year Award was presented by last year’s award recipient, Lynn Shipley.
The Citizen of the Year is selected each year by a committee of past Citizen of the Year (COY) recipients. The deliberation and selection process behind the COY honor is highly respected and is privy only to previous COY recipients and revealed to the public at the Chamber’s Annual Banquet.
Each year a committee of previous COY recipients meet to deliberate on and choose the next COY. Qualities of a COY, as defined by previous recipients include an individual or group who has contributed significantly to the quality of life in the community and who has been involved in quality and effective volunteer work. A COY will also exhibit the leadership needed to achieve success for all in San Angelo and passionately pursues the best for this community.
The 2020 Citizen of the Year was Matt Lewis

With the priorities of God, his family, and his work, Lewis's contributions and leadership over the past 19 years are immeasurable.