Upstate Medical University

Centerstate CEO Announces Businesses of the Year Winners

Published By: Rick Moriarty

Syracuse, N.Y. -- CenterState CEO announced the winners of this year’s Business of the Year awards during its annual meeting, which was held virtually on Thursday.

The awards recognize outstanding achievements of regional businesses and organizations in five categories. This year’s winners are:
Category: More than 50 employees
Winner: Quadrant Biosciences Inc.
With its academic research partners, it developed diagnostics and surveillance tools to aid in the detection of Covid-19 in individuals and communities across the U.S. In 2020, it gained national recognition for co-developing a saliva test for Covid-19.

Category: Less than 50 employees

Winner: ComSource Inc.
When Covid-19 hit, the IT solutions and service provider quickly adapt to the changing business landscape and its customer needs by developing and connecting clients to a variety of work-from-home solutions. It also connected customers with health and safety-related technology to aid their reopening efforts.

Additionally, ComSource opened a new headquarters in Franklin Square, created several new positions while retaining existing employees, and contributed to 23 philanthropic efforts, including the Jim & Juli Boeheim Foundation.

Category: Nonprofit

Winner: Central New York Community Foundation
In 2020, the Community Foundation administered the CNY COVID Community Support Fund, a joint effort with United Ways and other local partners that raised more than $2.2 million for immediate emergency response grants to nonprofits across four Central New York counties.

It also launched the Black Equity & Excellence Fund to support Black-led and Black-governed nonprofits and projects in Syracuse. , which distributed more than $550,000 in support to local, Black-led nonprofits and projects this past year.

Winner: Thompson & Johnson Equipment, Co.
In 2020, provided support to nonprofits with forklifts and heavy equipment, in addition to staff volunteer time and monetary donations. Notably, it supported nearly 10,000 meals to the FoodBank of CNY, FoodBank of the Southern Tier, and the Regional FoodBank.

Category: Minority-owned business (presented in partnership with the Upstate Minority Economic Alliance)

Winner: Dreissig Company
Dreissig offers products and services focused on apparel, uniforms, textiles, linens, industrial supplies, paper products and janitorial supplies. In 2020, after the company lost 60% of its revenue because of the pandemic, it pivoted to distributing personal protection equipment to hospitals, state agencies and local customers. The change greatly reducing its revenue loss for the year.

CenterState also announced the winners of its Health Care Heroes awards in recognition of CenterState members that represent hospital and critical testing partners for their front-line response during the pandemic:

  • Crouse Health
  • Nascentia Health, Inc.
  • Oswego Health
  • St. Joseph’s Health
  • Syracuse Community Health Center
  • Upstate University Hospital
  • Upstate University Hospital at Community General
  • WellNow Urgent Care

Also at the meeting, CenterState President Robert Simpson spoke about the challenges faced by the community as the result of the pandemic and how there are promising signs of recovery.

“We are beginning to see signs that we are approaching a turning point in our economic recovery,” he said. “Unemployment has dropped from record highs at the height of the pandemic, the pipeline of projects is beginning to fill quickly, and perhaps more importantly, a sense of hope and optimism about our region’s recovery is returning.”

The meeting’s keynote speaker was Aisha Glover, vice president of Newark, New Jersey, based Urban Innovation at Audible, a creator of premium audio storytelling.