NNBW Editor: 2020 Best In Business contest underway with nomination period

RENO, Nev. — The time has almost come! The Northern Nevada Business Weekly’s 2020 Best In Business contest officially kicks off this Wednesday, Aug. 19.

I know I speak for everyone on the NNBW team when I say we couldn’t be more pleased to wrap up the summer with some celebration for all the hard-working people and businesses that make Northern Nevada such a special place to live and work.

No doubt, COVID-19 has absolutely walloped many industries across the nation this spring and summer, and the argument is ironclad that Nevada has been hit harder than any other U.S. state.

Gov. Steve Sisolak alluded to this once again last week when he signed SB4, legislation that shields most Silver State businesses from frivolous COVID-related lawsuits.

“This bill isn’t about economic expansion, it’s about our state’s economic survival. It’s about acknowledging that Nevada relies heavily on a single industry — the hospitality industry,” the governor said.

While we haven’t been immune to heartache and frustration in Northern Nevada, we can take some comfort thanks to the region’s ante-up in recent years on technology, advanced manufacturing, logistics and other sectors — and in doing so, betting less on tourism, hospitality and gaming to drive the economy.

Despite that, and cheesy gambling puns aside, it’s been a crummy year for business across the board, so what better time than now to give our region’s industries, companies and corporations — and, of course, the people responsible for their prosperity — the recognition they deserve by honoring them with the NNBW’s Best In Business awards.

Nominations open Wednesday

Here are some of the key details for this year’s contest, as well as some important reminders and updates.

  • First things first, you can access the contest at the following URL — nnbw.com/bestinbusiness2020 — I recommend bookmarking the page. Come Wednesday morning, you'll able to begin nominating.
  • Like in previous years, the 2020 contest will be broken into two phases: a nomination period and a voting period, both of which will be handled by an independent third-party platform through our website (no paper ballots will be accepted; it’s all digital).
  • The nomination period runs from Aug. 19 through Sept. 9, during which readers can nominate any person or business in any of the 18 categories (more on that below).
  • Once the nomination period wraps up, we’ll spend time weeding through the entries to ensure accuracy.
  • Next, the voting period is scheduled for Sept. 23 through Oct. 7, during which readers can vote once per day for their favorite nominee in each of the 18 categories.
  • After Oct. 7, we’ll tally up the votes and announce 10 finalists for each category — this means we’ll have a total of 180 finalists.
  • To wrap it all up, we’ll announce the 18 winners (including second and third place) on Dec. 30, 2020, both on our website and within the 13th annual Northern Nevada Book of Lists, our marquee special section that’s scheduled to publish the same day.

Increased categories this year

As noted, the big change for 2020 is there will be a total of 18 categories. We’re keeping the six main categories we’ve had in previous years, while adding 12 extras in an effort to celebrate even more industries.

As a side note, we will not be able to add any additional categories this year, but we're definitely open to suggestions for 2021 and beyond.

Following is a breakdown of the 18 categories for 2020:


  • Most Influential Professional (Thought Leaders)
  • New Nevada Innovator (Movers & Shakers)
  • Leader To Know (High Profile)


  • Most Sustainable Company (Green & Earth Friendly)
  • Most Philanthropic Company (Community Give-Back)
  • Most Diverse Company (Workforce Diversity)


  • Best Accounting Firm
  • Best Law Firm
  • Best Bank//SBA Lender
  • Best Credit Union
  • Best Loan & Title Company
  • Best Construction Company/Firm
  • Best Commercial Real Estate Company
  • Best Residential Real Estate Company
  • Best Hospital & Healthcare Provider
  • Best Commercial/Residential Developer
  • Best Manufacturing/Logistics Company
  • Best Technology Company/Firm

How to nominate

Starting Aug. 19, go to nnbw.com/bestinbusiness2020, click or tap each of the three main categories, enter the name of who you want to nominate, provide a photo and brief description of why that person or company is deserving, and submit.

We ask that you do your best with spelling, which is especially important for the three People categories. Also, please provide full names.

The last thing we want to see is someone, for example, nominate “Bill at Nevada State Bank” under the Leader To Know category, which leaves us guessing. I’m sure Bill is a great leader, but if we can’t dictate specifically who a nominee is, then that person might miss out on the voting period.

The absolute most important thing to remember is if a business, person or entity is not nominated during the nomination period, then you will not be able to vote for them once voting begins.

Questions? Please reach out to me or the NNBW’s Business Development Manager, Melissa Saavedra, at msaavedra@nevadanewsgroup.com, and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

Happy nominating, Northern Nevada! Remember — these businesses deserve it!

Kevin MacMillan is editor of the Northern Nevada Business Weekly. Email him at kmacmillan@nevadanewsgroup.com.


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