By Padja Yang



The Saint Paul City Council announced the winners of the sixth annual Saint Paul Business Awards and recognized the five winners and runners-up and celebrated the efforts of all nominees and other businesses who chose to operate in Saint Paul at the City Council meeting on October 26th.

The awards recognize local businesses that provide critical services, contribute to the City’s community, invest in their employees, and are committed to Saint Paul’s values of equity and diversity. Businesses are selected for an award in one of five categories based on nominations from the community.

“We had such a great slate of nominees this year! I am grateful to everyone who took part in the annual Business Awards from the organizers to the applicants to the section committee and beyond,” said Council President Amy Brendmoen. “It was a pleasure awarding the winners and celebrating the great things happening in our city on October 26th.”

“Local businesses are the heart of our neighborhoods. The St. Paul Business Awards give us an opportunity to honor our business owners for the hard work they do every day and to say thank you for doing business in St. Paul,” said Councilmember Rebecca Noecker.

The importance of Saint Paul’s business community is evident in the more than 100 businesses that were nominated for a 2022 award. Saint Paul businesses play a critical role in the City’s economic vitality and are to be acknowledged for their resiliency and commitment to remaining a business partner throughout the ongoing hardship of the pandemic has challenged many businesses.

The 2022 award winners and runners-up are:

  • ABC Realty LLC – Alice O’Brien Award: honoring a women-owned business that is committed to equity and empowerment. (Runner-up: In Black Ink)
  • Hmong Village Shopping Center – People’s Choice Award: honoring a business that is recognized for its excellence by Saint Paul residents. (Runner-up: Swede Hollow Cafe)
  • Michael Recycles Bicycles – Good Neighbor Award: honoring a business that shows a dedication to improving the community. (Runner-up: Vig Guitar)
  • NEOO Partners Inc. – New Kid on the Block Award: honoring a business that has opened in Saint Paul within the last five years. (Runner-up: Just Imagine)
  • Selby Wines & Spirits Inc. – Traditions Award: honoring a business that has been active in Saint Paul for at least twenty years. (Runner-up: Westside Haircare)

The Selection Committee that reviewed the applications and selected winners was made up of past winners from the Saint Paul business community. The committee included:

  • Abdiwali Ali, Karibu Grocery & Deli
  • Choua Vang, Golden Harvest Foods
  • Kathy Sundberg, GINKGO Coffeehouse
  • Tameka Jones, Lip Esteem LLC

Read about past award winners and learn more about the categories and criteria at

About the Saint Paul Business Awards

The Saint Paul Business Awards Program was launched in 2017 (RES 17-107) to recognize the outstanding businesses that call Saint Paul home. The program recognizes local businesses that provide critical services, contribute to the City’s community, invest in their employees, and are committed to Saint Paul’s values of equity and diversity. Since then, 24 Saint Paul businesses – small businesses to major employers and new start-ups to generations-old family firms – have been honored for their role in making Saint Paul a vibrant and prosperous city.

Business Awards Guidelines (Eligibility Requirements)

To be eligible for an award, a Saint Paul business must:

  • be committed to equity, diversity, and empowerment,
  • provide outstanding customer service,
  • be involved in the community or make attempts to better the community as a whole,
  • not have been selected by the committee for an award in five years, and
  • not be a non‐profit organization.
  • demonstrate commitment to the community through volunteer work and contributions,
  • be in good standing with the City of Saint Paul (i.e., no outstanding fees, abatement issues, etc.),
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