Brittany Katz and Andrea Boddeker are the 2021 Community First Award honorees for Philanthropy because of their initiative to help provide resources for other small businesses to grow.
“Local businesses are the staple to many communities in the Tennessee Valley,” officials said. “When the pandemic took over everyday life, small businesses were hit the hardest, facing a loss in revenue and some even shutting down. The economy made it hard for local businesses to thrive, but two local business owners took it into their own hands to make sure other businesses like theirs could have a fighting chance to make it through the pandemic.”
Ms. Katz is the owner and operator of Terra Running Company and Cleveland Coffee and Market. Ms. Katz has won several awards for her innovative businesses and service around the community.
Ms. Boddeker is the owner of Carroll Printing Company. She successfully merged two companies together creating a single source for all printing and decoration needs in Bradley County.
As businesses started to shut down during the height of the pandemic, Ms. Katz and Ms. Boddeker felt the hardship of keeping their businesses afloat. They wanted to save their businesses, but also saw the need to help other local businesses as well.
Both women joined together with their savvy business strategies and passion to uplift others and came up with a way to give back. They created the Small Biz Give Campaign. It’s a give back program where Carroll Printing Company and Cleveland Coffee and Market donate a portion of their proceeds to a different Cleveland-based nonprofit organization each month. Since the start of the campaign, the project has donated thousands of dollars to organizations.
“It is such an honor to be nominated for the Community First award based on my work during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially because I, along with all other small business owners, was just doing what I needed to do for the businesses to survive,” said Ms. Katz. “Me and my businesses had great community support, made smart business decisions and kept working hard despite the ever-changing business climate.”
President and CEO of Cleveland Chamber of Commerce Michael Griffin says Ms. Katz and Ms. Boddeker inspired the Chamber to come up with the Momentum Small Business Grant. This initiative became a program that helped 24 small businesses in Cleveland with grants. Mr. Griffin believes these women set the model for other local businesses around Bradley County.
“This program is very innovative in itself, but it’s also very courageous for two small business owners who have struggled along with everyone else to put the community in front of their own needs,” said Mr. Griffin. “These two fine young women are great examples of strong business people who care about and want to put their community first.”
Ms. Katz and Ms. Boddeker will be honored at the Community First Awards Gala hosted by Cleveland State Community College in September at the Barn at Faith Farms in Athens.
To purchase a ticket or for more information, contact the Foundation Office at 423-614-8700. Tickets for the gala are on sale online at mycs.cc/communityfirst. All proceeds from the event will go to the CSCC Foundation Annual Campaign.