|The evening dedicated to supporting wounded warriors began with an honor guard. Times-Mirror Staff Photo/John L. Geddie|
Just across the county line, the Dulles Regional Chamber held its “Stars Over Dulles” business awards March 9 at the Westfields Marriot in Chantilly.
A major theme of the event was recognition of wounded servicemen and the work done by the USO in supporting them and their families.
While several veterans and wounded warriors were in attendance, the crowd rose to their feet for Aaron Causey and his wife Kat after a short video outlined their struggle and the support they received from the USO.
|Kat and Aaron Causey were recognized at the event. Aaron Causey was injured abroad while his wife was volunteering with the USO. Times-Mirror Staff Photo/John L. Geddie|
Kat Causey was a volunteer with the local USO when her husband Army Sergeant 1st Class Aaron Causey lost his legs in Afghanistan in 2011.
“My USO experience is probably one of the few that is full circle in that I’ve given aid and received it … Everyone in this organization has been so wonderful and I feel so fortunate so say that I’ve been a part of this,” said Kat Causey.
The event was emceed by Alex Orfinger, publisher of the Washington Business Journal, who joined chamber CEO Debra Biely of Booz Allen Hamilton in presenting the USO with a check for $23,150. The money was raised at the event’s silent and paddle auctions during the event.
The funds were accepted by Elaine Rogers, president and CEO if the USO of Metropolitan Washington.
The event also served to recognize excellence within the Dulles Regional Chamber.
Xango won small business of the year, beating out nominees Potomac Falls Express Lube & Car Wash and Systems Furniture Gallery.
Among mid-sized businesses, Chantilly-based Exhibit Edge took the award. Other nominees were AOC Solutions and Tri-Vision Studios.
|Cardinal Bank wins for best large business. Times-Mirror Staff Photo/John L. Geddie|
Cardinal Bank received the chamber’s large business of the year award, beating out Cox Communications and Reston Hospital Center.
The event also recognized two nonprofits: Final Salute (an organization supporting homeless female veterans) among small nonprofits and FACETS for large nonprofits. Other nominees were Friends of Frying Pan Park, Tigerlily Foundation and Fellowship Square.
With a tie in the judging, the Citizen of the Year Award was split between Justin Exner of Fairway Independent Mortgage and Bob Kessler of Systems Furniture Gallery.