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Group honors local entrepreneurs

Group honors local entrepreneurs

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For the second consecutive year, Richmond-based Astyra Corp. has received the Metropolitan Business League's Entrepreneurs of the Year Award.

The technology staffing and consulting firm was founded in 1997 by former Old Dominion University roommates Ken Ampy and Samuel Young.

"They had their best year ever last year," said Oliver R. Singleton, MBL president and chief executive.

"Last October, when the government was rapidly trying to close out the cash-for-clunkers program, they got a call on Thursday and by Monday morning they had hired 200 people to process paperwork for the government."

The MBL recognized Astyra, its founders and other local businesses for leadership, innovation and contributions to diversity at the organization's 20th annual membership reception last night.

Here are the other award recipients:

•The Chairman's Award went to Boss Chi Catering, a food service company owned by Gary Boss and Chima Ugworji that operates the Marshall Street Café and serves as many as 63,000 customers a week at local facilities such as Maymont, the Virginia Home for Boys and Saint Paul's College. •The Trailblazer Award, which recognizes a successful partnership between a large and small company, went to the construction firms W.M. Jordan Co., which has a regional office in Richmond, and Canterbury Enterprises of Chester. The firms were recognized for working together on business development and training and their partnership to construct two research and technology buildings at the University of Virginia. •The League Leadership Award went to Ronald Powell, chief executive officer of HCA Central Atlantic Supply Chain, for his work ensuring minority participation in the health-care provider's distribution network. The award goes to an MBL member that has made an exceptional contribution to inclusion and diversity. •The Vision of Excellence Award went to Richmond-based packaging and paper products company MeadWestvaco Corp., which recently moved into a new corporate headquarters building downtown. "They did an outstanding job with their headquarters building in making an effort to be inclusive of local businesses, small businesses and minority businesses," Singleton said.

-- John Reid Blackwell

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