Chamber selects Business Person of the Year
By Martha Marteney - Staff Writer
South Windsor - posted Wed., Sep. 28, 2011
The South Windsor Chamber of Commerce has selected Michael Blezard as the 2011 Business Person of the Year. “It’s a privilege to have Michael Blezard as our Business Person of the Year,” said SWCC President John Zahner. Blezard has been involved with the SWCC in various capacities for more than 15 years, including serving on the board of directors, as committee chair, treasurer and president. He was selected by a committee comprised of past BPOY recipients for his involvement with the SWCC and the community as a whole, and for being a successful business person.
As president, Blezard felt one of his accomplishments was getting the SWCC on firm financial ground. Working with the previous executive director, Cate Evans, Blezard said the SWCC changed its direction from moving sideways to being a driving force in town, aiding the economic climate and supporting business networking. He was also on the search committee for the current executive director, Shari Fiveash.
In addition, Blezard is active with the South Windsor Rotary Club, where he has served as committee chair and president and has been recognized as a Paul Harris Fellow, the Rotary’s highest honor. He is also a board member of the South Windsor Community Foundation, and many other local organizations.
Blezard is a certified public accountant and partner in the accounting firm of Pue, Chick, Leibowitz & Blezard, located in Rockville. He said receiving the Business Person of the Year award felt like a lifetime business achievement award. “It goes in the office and will be prominently displayed,” he said. He believes he was selected because of his many years with the SWCC. “I try to engage in the community and give back where I can,” he said.
Blezard moved to South Windsor in 1992, and raised two children with his wife, Michelle. With both kids now in college, the couple is taking time to re-evaluate their priorities and time commitments. Blezard is contemplating returning to his love of the water with a sail boat or wind surfer. He learned to surf while living in Hawaii from 1969 to 1977. The family dog, Riley, has recently become a certified therapy dog, visiting locations with Michelle on a routine basis.
Blezard received the Business Person of the Year award during the SWCC annual dinner meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 27, which was held at Maneeley’s Banquet Facility and Catering. The BPOY is an action item in the SWCC’s Strategic Plan for developing community involvement.
The newly-updated SWCC Strategic Plan was unveiled at the annual dinner. It provides overall objectives, as well as specific action items, for supporting social innovation to the SWCC’s diverse membership so that it can be a regional force in developing South Windsor. “We really want to make our region grow and succeed,” said Fiveash.
For more information on the South Windsor Chamber of Commerce, visit the offices at 22 Morgan Farms Drive in South Windsor, call the SWCC at 860-644-9442, or visit the website southwindsorchamber.org.