The 2018 BBA Award Winners Are Announced

Burlington, VT- The Burlington Business Association (BBA) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 BBA Awards. These awards honor the innovative business practices, individual contributions, and architectural achievements of Burlington’s business community.  On April 5th at the BBA Annual Dinner and Meeting, we will honor their contribution to Burlington.

The 2018 Business of the Year Award will go to Coldwell Banker Hickok & Boardman Realty, a locally owned company affiliated with one of the most nationally recognized names in real estate, ColdwellBanker. The CBHB agency has set the bar for marketing Vermont properties, as illustrated by their consistent ranking as the #1 Coldwell Banker Office in Vermont and as one of the top 50 Coldwell Banker companies nationwide. With 71 Licensed Sales Associates, and 16 Staff, Hickok & Boardman’s real estate agency offers a wealth of skills, including the area’s only dedicated relocation department to assist small and large businesses with recruitment support for job candidates.


Coldwell Banker Hickok and Boardman is proud to have a majority female leadership team, with five women, including owner and president, Leslee MacKenzie. Leslee MacKenzie has been recognized for her extraordinary leadership on the local and national level.  Leslee is actively engaged in issues impacting our city and surrounding counties from affordable housing, health care, k-12 education, the Burlington Business Association, and Vermont Futures project.

In conjunction with the firm’s growth and commitment to providing extraordinary service to their clients, their dedication to our local community is unwavering. The associates and staff of Coldwell Banker Hickok & Boardman Realty give in terms of time, volunteering over 5,000 hours a year, and donating money to nearly 100 nonprofits and organizations. With roots that stretch back to the 19th century, Coldwell Banker Hickok & Boardman Realty maintains a historic connection to the Lake Champlain region and celebrates their 60th anniversary in 2018.



For the Tim Halvorson Award for Business Person of the Year, we are excited to honor Thomas Leavitt, CEO and President of Northfield Savings.  He serves on the Boards of Norwich University Applied Research Institutes, Vermont Housing Finance Agency, ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, andthe Flynn Center. He is an active member of the Vermont Financial Literacy Commission. After graduating from Burlington High School, Leavitt earned a BS from the University of New Hampshire, and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. A native of Burlington, Leavitt returned to Vermont to raise his family and eventually become President of Northfield Savings Bank. The bank holds a special place in our downtown business community, and regularly demonstrates its commitment to Burlington by sponsoring local events, such as Discover Jazz and First Night, and supporting the work of local non-profits.



The 2018 Architectural Excellence Award in Honor of Hertzel N.Pasackow will go to City Market’s South End store, which opened to citywide anticipation in November. The new store is the greatest undertaking by City Market since it opened the Downtown store in 2002. City Market partnered with Freeman French Freeman, DEW Construction Corp, VHB, Stone Environmental, Pomerleau Real Estate and many others to open their South End store on Flynn Avenue this fall. The Co-op is built on a remediated brownfield site, and includes a deli, café, a community room and the Community Teaching Kitchen. Outside, customers will find a natural play area for kids and a rain garden to assist with run-off. The South End property is environmentally sustainable in a number of different ways. The store is the first in Vermont to use a transcritical CO2 refrigeration system, which are more efficient than commonly used systems and have a much lower global warming potential. In addition, the Co-op placed solar tubes throughout the store and uses LED lighting with an intelligent lighting system. The Brownfield remediation work included asbestos abatement, on-site stormwater treatment, and asphalt and concrete as remedial soil barriers. Because of this work, City Market received the 2017 Vermont Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence.

The BBA will also be extending a special recognition to celebrate the life of Antonio B. Pomerlau, one of Burlington’s most iconic businessmen and philanthropists. Aside from his legendary business career, Mr. Pomerleau’s (known affectionately in Burlington as “Mr. P”) contributions to the YMCA, the Lake Champlain Community Sailing Center, St. Michael’s College, the Burlington Boys and Girls Club, and the Burlington Police Department have had a significant impact on the economic vitality of  Burlington. Tony passed away in his home on February 8th, 2018 at the age of 100.

Each of these winners stands as an example of the individuals and organizations that drive Burlington’s economic vitality.

“It is our honor and pleasure each year to recognize our award winners. We have a deeply committed business community. Each day Burlington’s businesses take risks, celebrate small and large successes, and invest in the future of Burlington” said Kelly Devine, Executive Director of the BBA. “The belief in a strong future for Burlington is at the core of the BBA, and our award winners reflect that belief in the work they do each day to make our city such a great place to live, work and play. I look forward to celebrating them on April 5th.”

“The Annual Dinner is our favorite event of the the year and it all comes together with the presentation of the awards. These winners are the proof that the individual commitments and contributions of our businesses add up to the energy and vibrancy that defines our city” said BBA’s Board Chair, Russ Scully.  

The BBA Annual Dinner and Awards will take place at the Hilton Burlington on Thursday, April 5th from 5-9 pm. Tickets are available for purchase at The BBA Annual Awards is presented by People’s United Bank. 

The Burlington Business Association, founded in 1978, is a non-profit, non-partisan membership organization with over 250 business and non-profit members. Our mission is to enhance and promote the economic vitality of Burlington, Vermont, and to assure that the City of Burlington continues as the cultural, social, political, educational and economic center of northwestern Vermont.