Each November, Bozeman, Montana-based Prospera Business Network hosts its biggest event of the year, the Business Excellence Awards. On Thursday, November 3, nearly 300 business professionals from southwest Montana came together to celebrate the 2016 nominees, where the winners were then announced live at the event.
West Paw Design won the biggest award Prospera gives out at the event, the 2016 Business of the Year Award, for the company’s “exceptional contribution to the region’s business community.”
“We are excited and honored to win Prospera’s Business of the Year award and to be have been nominated alongside such an inspiring group of business peers,” said Spencer Williams, owner and president of West Paw Design. “It is our 75 talented employees and our thriving business community that have helped make West Paw Design what it is today, 20 years after we began on this journey.”
By encouraging its employees to get out in the community and inspire and educate school children and college-aged young adults about the work West Paw Design does through sustainable manufacturing, West Paw Design makes being an active member of their business community a priority, the company said. West Paw Design regularly provides tours to local schools and business organizations in an effort to educate them about everything from recycled materials to financial transparency.
Additionally, West Paw Design co-founded the Gallatin Valley Manufacturing Partnership to “identify priority manufacturing opportunities and requirements needed to grow this sector in the greater Bozeman area.” Attended by manufacturers from across southwest Montana, the goal is to support partners in education, economic and workforce development, according to West Paw Design.
West Paw Design is one of several of Montana’s leading businesses that launched Business for Montana’s Outdoors. The Council advocates for the preservation of our outdoor heritage through common-sense policy and collaboration, raising awareness about the role Montana’s public lands play in providing a competitive advantage to our state’s economy.
West Paw Design also employs adults with disabilities through a partner organization, Reach Inc., which works to empower adults with disabilities through job placement.
West Paw Design implemented a volunteer program, providing each employee four hours of paid volunteer time. In its first year, the company paid for a total of 240 volunteer hours. That’s 240 hours that were spent bettering our community. In 2016, West Paw Design doubled the program and currently pays employees a day’s wage (8 hours) to volunteer in our community. The employees at West Paw Design are big believers in doing what they can to keep their communities thriving.
Besides volunteering, below are some of the ways West Paw Design gives back and the organizations that benefited:
- West Paw Design matches employee donations to non-profits of their choice—up to $30 per employee.
- Employees volunteer time to local non-profits that work to improve people’s lives in the community by doing things such as help fund a women’s domestic violence shelter as well as a warming center for the homeless.