2017 Honorees 

 

Lifetime Achievement Award

Sada Cumber, Special Envoy to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation

 

Business of the Year Award

Journeyman Construction Inc

Emerging Business of the Year Award

Teapioca Lounge

Economic Engine Awards

Esolvit Inc

SparkCognition

PhoNatic

Community Leadership Award

Wong Family

Community Organization of the Year

Austin Asian American Film Festival

Member of the Year 

Laura Fowler, The Fowler Law Firm

Lifetime Achievement Award

Lifetime Achievement Award

Our 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Sada Cumber, former Special Envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Mr. Cumber has had success as an entrepreneur, a philanthropist, and a diplomat. He was the first appointee for his position as Special Envoy to the OIC and he defined the scope and mandate of the role for those who would follow him. For his contributions to our community, we are happy to award him the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Business of the Year

Business of the Year

Journeyman Construction was founded in 1996 to provide consulting services in construction. In 2001, it began managing construction projects as a general contractor. Their growth has been recognized by Entrepreneur magazine, who named it a top 100 fastest growing construction firms in the US. The Austin Business Journal named Journeyman the top minority owned business in 2014 and 2015.

Emerging Business of the Year

Emerging Business of the Year

Teapioca Lounge was an idea dreamt up by Christina Lu early in 2011. After the concept was proven, Christina, her husband Bao, and partners Johnson Wu, Jasmine Luong, and Victor Adame decided on the franchise model for growth. This strategy gained momentum in 2016 and there are currently three outlets in Austin, one in San Marcos, and two in Oklahoma with three more on the way. We recognize Teapioca Lounge for focusing on their patrons and employees and wish them sweet success in the future.

Economic Engine

Economic Engine

It all began with a dream to help businesses increase sales and reduce expenses. This turned into reality when Sri Boddapu started Esolvit in 2000, to help the customers reach their true potential. Esolvit is a leader in information technology, application development, product development, outsourcing, and IT and consulting services.

Economic Engine

Economic Engine

SparkCognition was founded in 2014. It is an artificial intelligence 3.0 leader in cognitive computing analytics. Its products are recognized for using cutting-edge technology to enhance cyber security, machine learning, and failure prevention. The firm has been recognized as the 2015 Hottest Startup in Austin, was the only US based company to win Nokia’s Open Innovation Challenge, and most recently named a top 100 AI company in the world.

Economic Engine

Economic Engine

Sara and Pat Lee, founders of Pho Saigon, realized that Vietnamese menus were inaccessible to patrons outside their community and thus PhoNatic was born in 2011 to offer authentic Vietnamese food in a fast, casual environment. Their chain has grown to five locations, the newest in the Mueller Development. We recognize them for creating jobs for hundreds and providing phun, phast, and phresh, Vietnamese food for everyone.

Community Organization of the Year

Community Organization of the Year

The Austin Asian American Film Festival was started in 2004 by students at the University of Texas at Austin and ran as an annual event until 2010. After a 4-year hiatus, the Festival was revived in 2014 by a small group of individuals who recognized the need for this community event. With the support of partners and sponsors, and the commitment of a large number of dedicated volunteers, there has been three successful years of screenings of movies by Asian Americans as well as films from Asia.

Community Leadership Award

Community Leadership Award

The Wong Family donated $20 million to establish The Mitchel and Shannon Wong Eye Institute. This gift allows the Dell Medical School to establish an ophthalmology department early, and play an important role in their mission of transforming health care. Thank you Dr. Mitchel and Mrs. Rose Wong for being superb examples of how Asian Americans make Austin home and give back to the community.

Member of the Year

Member of the Year

Laura Fowler is the managing shareholder of The Fowler Law Firm, which is the largest veteran owned civil law firm in Texas and the largest woman-owned law firm in Austin. She has been a speaker at a Business Basics workshop, sponsored events, and is the the Chamber's Women’s Business Club. She brings many interesting women to our events and helped recruit several new members to our chamber.

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