Philippine Chamber of Commerce-MI 2012 Red Carpet Gala. DTE Marketing Director Iqbal Singh and other DTE executives receive the award for DTE. Like us on Facebook for more photos. Photo by: Percy Antonio

The Philippine Chamber of Commerce-Michigan (PCCM) honored seven companies and one trade group for outstanding achievements and for the important role they play in the efforts to improve the general welfare.

PCCM President Betsy Henry said PCCM is proud to showcase the remarkable achievements of the awardees, noting that they “have been very supportive of and instrumental in the growth of the Philippine Chamber.”[box type=”default” size=”large”] Their contributions to efforts to improve quality of life cited [/box]Ryan Rosario, president of the Filipino-American Community Council (FILAMCCO) and concurrent PCCM chairman, said the giving of the awards is “the community’s gesture of gratitude to the honorees for their invaluable efforts to contribute to the general welfare.”

Rosario also said, “The awardees have contributed much – in one way or the other – to the efforts to improve the quality of life on the community level.”

Following are the awardees:

1. DTE Energy. Founded in January 1996, DTE Energy has grown to become the largest energy company in Michigan.

One reason the Chamber selected DTE to receive the award is its excellent community-public relations program that provides, among others, assistance to its less fortunate household customers.

Another reason is the company’s diversity program that immensely benefits minority-owned businesses. Recently, DTE Energy was cited as Corporation of the Year by the Michigan Minority Supplier Diversity Council for continuously purchasing supplies from certified minority companies, for assisting in the development of minority suppliers, and for promoting supplier diversity within the company.

The chamber cited DTE Energy as Most Outstanding Company of the Year.

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2. State Farm.

State Farm is one of the largest insurance companies in the United States and Canada. Many Filipinos and Filipino-Americans get their insurance from State Farm, particularly from State Farm agents Jack Regala and Ryan Rosario. The reason is that they trust State Farm because its agents, who are knowledgeable and dependable, can give them “a state of assurance.”

The chamber honored State Farm as Most Outstanding Company for being the most consistent benefactor of the community.

3. Fuji Buffet. The phenomenal success of Fuji Buffet as a business enterprise is largely due to the business acumen of the owners – Ricky Dong and his wife Cindy. But there are “immaterial-plus” factors that help catapult the young couple to the height of success.

For one, Ricky Dong, who traces his roots to Southern China, loves Asians, especially Chinese and Filipinos. In fact, most of his employees are Chinese-Americans and Filipino-Americans, and as a result, Fuji Buffet has an Asian-friendly ambiance.

Fuji Buffet has also endeared itself to the Filipino community because it is always ready to extend support for various community undertakings. In fact, Fuji Buffet is a regular supporter of the Chamber and FILAMCCO.

Fuji Buffet received the Award for Most Outstanding Company in the Promotion of Family Values.

4. Maple Manor Rehab. The Evangelista family is well known in the community not only because the members are all professionals but also because the family is successful in its business ventures. The family-owned Maple Manor, an assisted-living facility in Wayne, is a progressive enterprise that employs, among others, many healthcare professionals.

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Maple Manor is now constructing a 100-bed rehab facility in Novi, which is expected to generate at least 100 jobs and expected to open in January 2013.

The chamber conferred on Maple Manor the Award for Most Outstanding Company in Job Generation.

5. Asian Pacific American Chamber of Commerce (APACC). APACC is a 12-year-old non-profit organization which is governed by an 18-member board of directors and is headquartered in Rochester Hills. Since its establishment, APACC has provided a unified voice for Asian-owned businesses and the Asian community.

APACC serves as mentor of other Asian business groups under its umbrella. It was upon the urging, inspiration and guidance of APACC that the Philippine Chamber came into being and grew in the last few years.

The chamber bestowed on APACC the Award for the Most Outstanding Business Group.

6. Jeffrey Vedua, CPA. Jeffrey Vedua is one of the key officers of the Philippine Chamber Commerce. The incumbent treasurer of the Philippine Chamber, Jeff does not only make life “less taxing” to people who tap his professional services but also serves as a model officer for being always low-key and doing his assigned work without fanfare and publicity.

Jeff is also noted for its commitment to the chamber’s policy of transparency. He fulfills this commitment by presenting a report on the finances of the chamber at every meeting.

The chamber honored Jeff Vedua as the Most Outstanding Professional of the Year.

7. Mon Jin Lau. Established in 1969, Mon Jin Lau Restaurant is now operated by the third generation of the Chin family. In the past four decades, Mon Jin Lau has been one of Detroit’s “most celebrated and premiere dining destinations.”

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Located at 1515 East Maple Road, Troy, this upscale restaurant has received rave reviews by various publications, including the Metro Times, Real Detroit and Ambassador Magazine. All the reviews praised Mon Jin Lau for “its innovative, new Asian fusion selections and unique ambiance.”

In 2008, Hour Detroit voted Mon Jin Lau the “Restaurant of the Year.”

The chamber cited Mon Jin Lau as the Most Outstanding Company in Restaurant Management.

8. Filipino Star News. The Filipino Star News is a pioneering venture in mass communication in the Filipino-American community in Michigan. Published twice in one month, the tabloid-size newspaper will be celebrating its third anniversary in the first week of December, this year.

The Filipino Star News has become as an important marketing tool for many companies. By advertising with the Filipino Star, they effectively promote their products and services.

Likewise, the Filipino Star has promoted the causes of various organizations such as FILAMCCO and PACCM by regularly reporting about their projects and activities.

The chamber cited the Filipino Star News as Most Outstanding Media Company in recognition of its pioneering mass-communication efforts.