Skip to content

Awards 2023

NOTE: Deadline for Submission Nov 10th

The Chamber invites you to to submit a nomination for our annual awards.


The AO Evans Award

The AO Evans Award recognizes one individual each year for a long-term legacy of outstanding contributions to the West Monroe and West Ouachita community.  The person cannot be an elected official who currently holds office, nor can they be on the West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber Board of Directors.  The submission should include several examples of specific contributions to the betterment of the community made by the nominee.

The award was first presented in 1976 to Mr. AT Mitchell.  When considering a name for the new award, the Chamber Board decided to name it in honor of the founder of the West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce, Mr. A.O. Evans.  Mr. Evans was the manager of the Northern Division for Louisiana Power and Lights, now Entergy.  In 1956, Mr. Evans successfully worked to establish the West Monroe Chamber of Commerce.  Prior to that time, the Monroe-West Monroe Chamber served all of Ouachita Parish.  Several businesses in West Monroe split with the Chamber and formed the West Monroe Merchants Association.  Mr. Evans believed that by establishing a West Monroe Chamber of Commerce, the organization could accomplish far more.  The West Monroe Chamber was chartered on March 31, 1956 with Mr. Evans as the first President.

Mr. Evans was dedicated and committed to West Monroe and worked to make the city an outstanding place to live, work, and raise a family.  Mr. Evans embodied the characteristics of the people the award honors.

Past recipients include: A.T. Mitchell, Fred Bennett, Sr. , F.C. McConnell, Jesse Heard, Hugh Balfour, Louis Gruber, Jeff Caldwell, Jr., John Grantham, Alton Calhoun, Margaret Truly, George Welch, Bernard Biedenharn, Bert Hatten, Ike Hamilton, Bill Nelson, Jr., Jack Grable, Charles Morgan, Edward Stinson, Jr., Helen LeFevre, Alice Bennett, Eugene Smith, Clifton Tennison, Evelyn Blackmon, Sidney Wilhite, Cary Davis, Peggy Price Ford, Violet Liner, Arlan Rawls, Raymond Ford, Linda Lavender Ford, Ron Downing, Susan Hoffmann, Dr. August Danti, Judge “Bill” Norris, Jerry Lazenby, Laymon Godwin, Don Shows, Gretchen Kovac, Wade Bishop, Tex Kilpatrick, Blake Wheelis, Johnny Huntsman, Dr. Terry King, Doug Caldwell, Jean Halsell, The Honorable Dave Norris, Rick Guillot, Alana Cooper, Tashia Hines, and Dr. John Shepard.

The Johnny E. Huntsman Entrepreneurial Success Award

The West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce is currently taking nominations for the Johnny E. Huntsman Entrepreneurial Success Award.   This award honors a current WMWO Chamber business member or individual memberthat exemplifies the true entrepreneurial spirit, using these three main areas:

  1. Employees — this company or individual will have employees that understand that it takes hard work, dedication and loyalty for their company to succeed.
  2. Management Style — this company will understand their managers must prepare their employees for success and reward them when they succeed.
  3. An entrepreneurial spirit — an internal company spirit that fosters growth, loyalty and a deep desire to succeed.

Previous winners include: Johnny Huntman, Linda Lavender Ford, Linda Silmon, Wayne Petrus, Tom Sanders, Stanley Dupuy, Tim Brandon, Everett Stagg, Nash Patel, Dawn Smith, and David Benson.

Applications should include narrative support addressing the above three (3) points.

The Bert Hatten Community Impact Award

The Chamber recognizes that many public servants, non-profit leaders and engaged community members leave profound and lasting impacts on our community aligning with the mission of the Chamber that are not eligible for other awards given by the Chamber. This award seeks to recognize local community leaders that through the actions of their work and community service have demonstrated extraordinary leadership and a legacy of profound and lasting impact to our community in the areas of:

  1. education and workforce development
  2. promotion and development of the business community
  3. increasing the quality of life for all that live in Ouachita and surrounding parishes.

The executive board may select yearly a community award winner from membership nominations that deserves recognition for their service.

This community impact award may be given to no longer serving elected officials, current or past non-profit leaders and Chamber community partners that are currently or have significantly impacted our community through their role. The honoree may be a current member of the chamber but membership is not required.

Simply, The fabric of our community has been changed due to their impact.

Scroll To Top