In the early hours on June 16th, attendees of the Southwest Detroit Business Associations Community Investment Breakfast Presented by Motor City Casino Hotel’s Sound Board started filing in. Attendees wasted no time before breakfast was served to take advantage of the many networking opportunities as well as catching up with colleagues and friends. The Mexican Floklorico dancers from the Center of Music and Performing Arts Southwest kicked off the event with a lively and colorful performance.
As people began to find their seats, a warm welcome was given by the Emcee of the event, Lead Anchor, Fox 2 Detroit WJBK Huel Perkins. After a blessing from Pastor Kevin Casillas, Vice Board Chair President Steve Weiner, welcomed the attendees and introduced President, Kathy Wendler to give her opening remarks on SDBA’s 60th Anniversary Celebration. She was welcomed by cheers and applause as attendees celebrated Kathy’s last Community Investment Breakfast as President of SDBA.
After recognition to Kathy from the SDBA Board Members, it was time to give out the awards to the honorees. This year’s awards were custom made by The Glass Academy and were molds of storm drain covers with “Detroit” framing the top. This year’s honors were three categories: Trailblazer, Spirit of Southwest Detroit, and Legacy Leader. Those were followed by the coveted, Kathy Wendler Award that was given to Carmen Munoz.
The 2017 CIB Trailblazers were Geroge Azar of Flowers of Vietnam, Jason Ghannam of Paul’s Pizza, and Alana Rodriguez of Mama Coo’s Boutique. The Spirit of Southwest Honoress were Charles Danto of Danto’s Furniture and Jim Saucedo of State Farm. The Legacy Leader award went to Ben Fienman of E&L Supermercado, Sylvia Gucken of Ideal Steel, and Omar Hernandez of Mexicantown Bakery and Armando’s Restaurant.