Richard Birrenkott, SME past-president, explained the process that led to the selection of Jerry Smith, president and CEO of First Business Financial Services, as Executive of the Year.
Last fall, Birrenkott
said, names were gathered in three ways: The Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce
provided free space in its newsletter calling for nominations; previous nominees were asked if their applications might be brought forward another year; and previous winners were contacted and asked for referrals. This procedure yielded six confidential applications which, in November 2001, were passed along to a selection committee comprised of Birrenkott, director of regional sales for WPS Health Insurance; Greg Westrich of the Credit Union Executives Society, and Miriam S. Boegel, executive director of SME.
"Each year, the candidates for Executive of the Year become stronger in their business fields, professional organizations, and community service," Birrenkott
said."In turn, the selection process becomes more challenging for our committee, and that is good news for our community."
According to Birrenkott
, Smith's selection has brought the Executive of the Year Award to a new level."His
strong dedication to business, community, and family raises the standard of excellence for future recipients, "Birrenkott