VanderSloot, Meador honored with Hall of Fame awards - East Idaho News
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VanderSloot, Meador honored with Hall of Fame awards

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POCATELLO — Beneath the dimmed lights of the Stephens Performing Arts Center auditorium Wednesday evening, surrounded by colleagues and peers, Phil Meador and Frank VanderSloot were named to the Southeast Idaho Business and Achievement Awards Hall of Fame. Their accomplishments were lauded alongside other local high achievers in 14 different categories.

“It’s humbling more than anything else,” Meador said. “I know I wouldn’t be able to do some of the things we do with community outreach without the truly terrific people working for us. … I was nominated with a group of pretty phenomenal people, and that’s an honor in and of itself.”

Added VanderSloot, “It’s a real honor. Idaho is a neat place to able to come here, to raise our family. It is a great place for someone like me to be able to have a career, raise a family here and have success here. And to be honored this way is really something.”

The 17th annual Southeast Idaho Business and Achievement awards brought together business leaders and community activists to honor the area’s best.

The winners were:

Elementary Education: Catherine Leavitt
Middle School Education: Melanie Williams
High School Education: Lisa Delonas
University Education: Jennifer Attebery
Food and Beverage: Bart Nawotniak
Government: Rick Provencher
Industry/Technology: Arlen Wittrock
Non-Profit: Kathleen Lewis
Retail: Anne Fry
Firefighter/EMT: Travis Taylor
Law Enforcement: Akilah Lacey, Doug Armstrong, Paul Manning
Service Industry: Amy Rhoads
Military: Burns Leavitt
Volunteer: Randy Dixon

The evening was filled with examples of volunteerism, selflessness and heroism. Stories included Travis Taylor rappelling into raging wildfires, Arlen Witrock incubating a slew of new area jobs and Anne Fry using her boutique to boost customers’ confidence rather than make a quick buck. Law enforcement honorees Akilah Lacey, Doug Armstrong and Paul Manning have seen humanity’s worst and use their jobs to bring out our area’s best. Bart Nawotniak created a gathering place at the College Market where ideas and community activism now thrive. Rick Provencher oversees the nation’s leading nuclear energy research laboratory and the environmental cleanup and waste management mission at the Idaho site. Educators shared stories of putting their students first and inspiring the next generation of leaders.

Phil Meador is the patriarch of a group of thriving local car dealerships who gives back to the community through numerous donations and volunteerism. VanderSloot is the founder of Melaleuca. Since the company began in September 1985, VanderSloot has directed its growth into an international company that generates more than $1 billion in annual revenue, selling a variety of health and lifestyle products.

“I am extremely impressed with the quality of nominations we received this year,” said Idaho State Journal publisher Andy Pennington. “This area has exceptional people who live, work and do business here, and they deserve to be recognized.”

The honorees full biographies, chronicling their accomplishments, are available in a special magazine published by the Idaho State Journal.

The annual event is put on by the Idaho State Journal in conjunction with its sister publication, the Idaho State Business Journal. Farm Bureau Insurance, Portneuf Medical Center and Varsity Contractors are the evenings main sponsors.

The evening of drinks and dinner was punctuated by a keynote speech from Brett Judd. The business and motivational coach, author and founder of SteadyTIDE Marketing Solutions and various other small business ventures shared his own dose of inspiration.

The night was capped by the awards presentation, where the past year’s winners presented the awards to the 2016 honorees.

“To these nominees, we would like to say congratulations,” said Paul Roberts, Executive Vice President and CEO of Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company of Idaho. “Your hard work, dedication, leadership, community involvement and the positive impact you have made on others has improved the lives of those around you. We are privileged to have you in our communities.”

This story originally appeared in the Idaho State Journal. It is posted here with permission.