Chamber Announces Annual Chamber Award Recipients


Pictured from left: Michael Behm, Community Service Award; Kari Northey, Business of the Year Award (Kubiak-Cook Funeral Services); Rick Lameyer, President’s Choice Award

On Wednesday, December 10th, the Wayland Area Chamber of Commerce held their annual Chamber Awards Dinner at 84th Street Pub & Grill’s new banquet facility. The purpose of this event is to recognize chamber members for outstanding service in one of three areas.

1. Business of the Year Award – Kubiak-Cook Funeral Services

The Chamber recognizes that the business that demonstrates growth and success through innovation, hard work, and exceptional customer service. The business is actively involved in contributing to the success of the community as a whole by their contribution of time, energy, and resources.

Kubiak-Cook Funeral Services has contributed in many ways that enhance our community, chamber, city, and schools. They provide continuous support for the Chamber by sponsoring numerous events including the Wayland Business Expo, Chamber Business Directory, Chamber Golf Outing and more. In addition to being a strong supporter of the chamber, they also graciously contribute to area Veterans when they sponsored the 2014 Veterans Day Dinner, co-hosted a July picnic for West Michigan Veterans, offered a no-cost portrait session for Veterans in which each participating Veteran was presented with their picture on Veteran’s Day, and they sponsored the Wall of Veterans with 8” x 10” photos of resident Veterans at laurels of Sandy Creek.

In addition, Kubiak-Cook Funeral Services hosted a picnic for widows and widowers, volunteer at the Third Thursday Senior Citizen Group and the Wayland Community Education Senior Citizen Group, proudly support area non-profits and so much more.

To accept the Business of the Year Award was Kari Northey, Manager of Kubiak-Cook who expressed her gratitude to the chamber and community for the support stating, “We at Kubiak-Cook are so honored to have been awarded the Business of the Year by the Wayland Area Chamber of Commerce, last night at the annual dinner. It’s such a blessing for our staff to be able to serve such amazing communities and to do so much for community members not just at a time of loss. So thankful today for the opportunities we are given!”

2. Community Service Award – Michael Behm

The Chamber recognizes this person for performing outstanding service to the Wayland area. The chamber is pleased to recognize Michael Behm for reaching out to serve and better our community.

Some of the ways Michael has accomplished this included; providing his technical expertise as the chamber’s personal IT Tech working nights and weekends to fix and repair computers, printers, connectivity and wireless issues. He is also a dedicated volunteer at chamber events including setting up for the annual Chamber Expo and then returning the next day to do whatever needs to be done – often being the first to arrive and the last to leave.

Michael also operates the chamber sound system at chamber luncheons, after-hours, and special events. He is also the chamber photographer setting up photo shoots for the Annual Wayland Area Visitor’s Guide & Business Directory and at all chamber events. Not only does Michael take photos for the annual directory but assists in the design and editing process of the directory. Michael does not only help the chamber, but also other areas in the community. He operates the sound system for the Wayland Main Street’s Annual Art Hop and Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and operates the audio/visual equipment for the August Movies on Main Street. It was also Michael who wrote the lyrics for the performance in Lansing during the application process for Wayland to become a Main Street community.

Michael expressed appreciation and surprise for the award and acknowledged how much he enjoys working with everyone at the chamber, Main Street and everyone in the Wayland community stating, “This award was truly a surprise. It has been my pleasure to work with the Chamber and the community on so many projects. It is very rewarding to see a community this vibrant and I am always excited to be able to help.”

3. President’s Choice Award – Rick Lameyer, Godwin Hardware & Plumbing

The President of the Chamber looks at an area business, organization, or person that demonstrates outstanding leadership in bringing others together in the process of developing, sharing, and moving into a shared vision. The nominee would be an example of leading the way while setting and achieving predetermined goals.

Rick has been a strong supporter of chamber events by securing sponsorships each year in the Chamber Annual Expo and the Chamber Annual Golf Outing. Besides securing the sponsorships, Rick can routinely be found participating in the events either by volunteering or being actively involved in the event. Rick is also a supporter of the Annual Wayland Area Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Guide & Business Directory.

Rick is also a strong advocate of our local Veterans. He regularly attends fundraising events and is also known to volunteer to help raise awareness and finances for the organization. Due to the support and efforts by Rick, the annual VFW golf outing went from six teams in 2013 to 21 teams this year, a 350% increase. In addition, Rick donated building supplies and materials for a new home for former marine Josh Hoffman who was paralyzed by a sniper’s bullet in Iraq.

When Rick commits to helping with a project or event, he goes above and beyond to ensure his commitment is fulfilled and follows up upon completion.

Rick expressed his sincere appreciation stating, “ I feel honored to win this award and to be part of a Chamber Board that does so much for their community. It’s awesome to see the Wayland area come together to support those who have sacrificed and given so much to serve our Country. I am very proud to have played a small part in supporting our Veterans.”


Recognition for 30 Years in Business: Dr. Bruce Sexton

In addition to the three award recipients, Bruce Sexton, DDS was recognized by the Chamber and City for providing dentistry to the Wayland community for 30 years. City of Wayland Mayor Tim Bala recognized this wonderful milestone while presenting Dr. Sexton with a plaque to celebrate and thank him for his commitment to the Wayland community.

The Chamber is proud of all award recipients who support not only the Chamber, but many other organizations that help make Wayland a better place to live, work, and do business.

For more information about the 2014 Wayland Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Awards Dinner, please contact Chamber Executive Director Denise Behm at or 269-792-9246.