On Thursday, Ideas in Motion Media held the 5th Annual Good Life Awards at the Blue Chip Casino to much fanfare and excitement from local non-profits, supporting sponsors and those who have helped propel the positive news websites and social media networks, ValpoLife.com, PortageLife.com, LaPorteCountyLife.com and NWIndianaLife.com, to amazing heights over the last five years.
The annual event honors six awardees who go above and beyond to impact the mission of the Ideas in Motion Media good news networks in a positive and meaningful way. Each winner is honored with a custom solid-steel Good Life Award trophy, designed and crafted by Industrial Revolution owner Mike Leeson.
Winners of the 2016 Good Life Awards were: Sue Reed, Crossroads Chamber of Commerce President and CEO; Jeanne Sommer, Century 21 Alliance Group Owner and Lakeshore PAWS Co-Founder; Marty Corley, Michigan City Police Department Detective; Bob Phelps, Video & Media Teacher with the Porter County Career and Technical Center; Jan Wilson, CEO at NorthShore Health Centers; Anna Hanson, Video Producer/Editor with Ideas in Motion Media.
Good Life Award winners from the 5th Annual GLA’s gave their thoughts and feelings about being one of this year’s honored recipients:
“Feels good to receive this award as I am committed to making sure that everyone has the opportunity to live the best life as possible,” said Marty Corley. “This award is about the good in this community and I will continue to work with other community members and leaders to promote goodness for all to enjoy!!”
IIMM’s Anna Hanson said, “When things like this happen you don't really know what to say - and I definitely don't know what to say because I never win awards! But this is a really great honor, especially when it comes from a guy who hired me almost four years ago straight out of high school and put enough confidence in me to continually reach new heights. It feels awesome and I'm really, really thankful to be recognized as a Good Life Award winner!”
“Having been a contributor and supporter of ValpoLife since its inception, it's been rewarding to see the 'good news' mission of Chris Mahlmann come to life,” said Bob Phelps. “With close to 10 of my students having worked towards achieving that goal alongside him, I've been able to see first hand that people want access to good news in Northwest Indiana.”
In the past, Ideas in Motion Media would use the Good Life Awards to recognize and honor community organizations. Those non-profit organizations receiving the night’s proceeds were determined before the event took place. This year, the big decision was made on the evening of the event as part of the #GoodLifePitch.
The #GoodLifePitch welcomed all contributors, admirers, employees, or CEO’s of a community organization, or those who have been blessed by one, to pitch their ideas for a chance to share in the proceeds generated through the Good Life Awards. Entrants were prompted, through an application process, to explain why an organization that they felt passionate for deserves the proceeds from the event. The IIMM team then carefully read through all of the submissions during the evening's celebrations, and chose three outstanding pitches.
The winners of Ideas in Motion Media’s #GoodLifePitch were:
Worthy Women Recovery Home
WWRH is a Christian home that provides recently incarcerated women with re-entry programs and the tools necessary to reduce recidivism rates, substance abuse and addictions, and to empower them to live as positive role models for their children and in their community.
“This is such a blessing,” said D.E. "Sonshine" Troche, Founder of WWRH. “I’ve always loved the mission that Chris (Mahlmann) and the rest of the company has always had. It’s all about the positive and there’s so much ugliness out there. Here, you get a chance to come and celebrate everything good that’s going on.”
The Mission of Frontline Foundations, Inc. is to serve as a source of hope to young men and women suffering from alcohol and drug abuse while also providing an effective treatment and recovery support system.
“Obviously, there’s so much negativity out there and we really need to keep focused on the truth, which is that there is so much more good than there is bad,” said Amber Hicks, CEO at Frontline Foundations. “It’s really encouraging because if we focused on the negativity and some of the tragedy we would not want to continue on if that was our only focus. The scripture says that, ‘there’s more that are for us than are against us,’ and I live by that! The truth of the matter is that there are far more good people.”
Hannah’s Hope is a not for profit organization that aims at assisting children with special needs obtain various therapies and costly medical equipment that is so desperately needed. Hannah’s Hope works with organizations that provide these services, as well as providing monetary assistance to pediatric brain research.
“As an organization, we’re humbled to be acknowledged in a room full of such worthy entries,” said Mike Martinez, who founded Hannah’s Hope with his wife Mary. “It started as an idea around a dining room table and it’s grown to this. Seven years later we’ve managed to raise and donate $225K to various organizations and families. Anytime we can get in a room full of other people doing great things and share our story we feel blessed. To have Ideas in Motion Media put us in a room with these people, we’re pretty lucky.”
Sponsors of this year’s 5th Annual Good Life Awards and the first-ever #GoodLifePitch included: NIPSCO, Northwest Indiana Breast Care Center at Methodist Hospitals, Horizon Bank, Century 21 Alliance Group, Lakeshore PAWS, Albano’s Villa, Purdue Federal Credit Union, Realty Executives Premier, Economic Development Corporation of Michigan City, Porterfield Family Chiropractic, Flanagin’s Bulk Mail Service, Ozinga, Steindler Signs & Graphix, Duneland Chamber of Commerce, Greater La Porte Economic Development Corporation, Task Force Tips, and Schultz Floral & Gifts
Non-profits who pitched included: PATH – A Positive Approach to Teen Health, Boys & Girls Club of Porter County, Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Indiana, Reins of Life, Porter County Career and Technical Center, Lakeshore Paws, Friendship Botanic Gardens, Meals on Wheels, La Porte County Family YMCA, United Way of La Porte County, Emma's Footprints, Geminus, Housing Opportunities, Frontline Foundations, Northshore Health Centers, The Vic Sahagun Scholarship Foundation, Independent Cat Society, Women in Bloom, Hannah's Hope, United Way of Porter County, Visiting Nurse Association, South Shore Clean Cities, Tradewinds, Portage Township YMCA, Jacob's Ladder Pediatric Rehabilitation and Worthy Women Recovery Home.