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Meet the Recipients of the 18th Annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business Awards

April 13, 2022

Lansing, MI, April 13, 2022 — Ninety small businesses in Michigan have been selected from a pool of over 550 nominations as award recipients at the 18th annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business Gala.

This year’s honorees span 14 different business sectors and hail from every corner of the state.

From a hunting gear manufacturer in the Upper Peninsula to a family medicine center in Kalamazoo, each business honored this year plays an essential role in the Michigan economy. 

These small businesses are innovative, passionate and serve as the heart of their communities.

Grocer’s Daughter Chocolate, a 2022 Michigan 50 Companies to Watch awardee, has been making chocolate confections in Empire, Michigan since 2004. Owner Jody Hayden said their focus on ethical sourcing and progressive business management has allowed them to grow and be a central part of their local economy.

“Small businesses are often called the backbone of our nation, and they are, but they are also the heart of our communities,” said Hayden. “Building wealth and value that’s circulated locally is the work of small businesses and it’s absolutely vital to a healthy, stable state.”

For David Yanez, CEO of Adontix, being recognized as a SmartZone Best Small Businesses awardee reinforces the mission and vision of the organization.

“Building a company is a high contact sport,” said Yanez. “Being a small company, having this type of recognition goes a long way. This is for our entire team.”

Yanez founded Adontix to support sustainability and equity in the manufacturing industry. After connecting with MCSB, Yanez said Adontix has been able to expand their network and better meet their business goals. The Andontix team is excited to celebrate their achievements at the Michigan Celebrates Small Business Gala.

On May 3, 2022, over 800 guests will gather in-person at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Michigan to celebrate this year’s award recipients.

The list of award recipients can be found at

The six Founding Partners created an annual awards gala to recognize small business and second-stage companies. The founding organizations of Michigan Celebrates are as follows:

  • Edward Lowe Foundation
  • Michigan Business Network
  • Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
  • Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
  • Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM)
  • U.S. Small Business Administration – Michigan District Office

About Michigan Celebrates Small Business

Michigan Celebrates Small Business is a collaboration of trusted statewide founding organizations that offer resources for small businesses. Since 2005, their awards gala has celebrated how small businesses positively impact our communities and state. MCSB is focused on supporting, connecting and celebrating small businesses in Michigan.

Michigan Celebrates Small Business was founded by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Small Business Association of Michigan, U.S. Small Business Administration – Michigan, Edward Lowe Foundation, Michigan Business Network, and Michigan Small Business Development Center.      

Kinexus Group is an organization that invests its time and resources into inspiring positive economic change one individual, one business, and one community at a time. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter @KinexusGroup or “like” us on Facebook @KinexusGroup. Kinexus Group is the managing partner of gala.


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