Second Annual Polk Emerging Leaders Awards


The Polk Emerging Leaders Awards program has been developed to recognize those young professionals who have made significant accomplishments in their professional field in addition to contributions and commitment to the Polk County community.

The Polk Emerging Leaders Awards will be presented Tuesday, August 28, 2012 at 6 p.m. with Polk State College.

The awards ceremony is presented by the Greater Winter Haven Chamber of Commerce Foundation. The Winter Haven Chamber Foundation is a 501 c(3) organization dedicated to providing educational and professional development programs and events to the business community. As a part of that objective, the Foundation recognizes the importance of fostering an energized next generation of leaders to shepherd Polk County into the future. Individuals or their employers do not need to be a member of the Winter Haven Chamber to be eligible. We encourage applicants from all over Polk County.

If you are nominating an individual for this award, please submit the nomination no later than July 27, 2012. All applications are to be submitted, postmarked, e-mailed or hand delivered by Friday, August 3, 2012.



The Polk Emerging Leaders Awards are open to individuals between the ages of 21- 40 who live or work in Polk County. Eligible applicants must have lived or worked in Polk County for at least one year.

The following individuals are not eligible to apply:

2012 Winter Haven Chamber Foundation board members
Winter Haven Chamber of Commerce Staff
2012 award judges
Past years winners


Seven awards will be given in the following industry sectors:

Financial, Professional and other Business Services
Manufacturing/Warehousing/Supply-Chain Management
Medical Services/Life Science
Real Estate/Construction/Land Development/Engineering Services
Tourism/Hospitality Management/Communications

Entry Fee:

There is no entry, nomination or application fee.


Please ensure your application packet is correct and complete. Judges reserve the right to disqualify any applicant for lack of completion of required information.

To Nominate:

A person can be nominated by a peer or employer or self-nominated. To nominate an individual fill out this form. When the nomination is received, the nominee will receive a notification via email and a request for additional information.

To Apply:

Only one application per person will be accepted. Application available here.

If downloading the application, please submit either via e-mail to ;by mail to Winter Haven Chamber Foundation ATTN: Polk Emerging Leaders Awards, PO Box 1420 Winter Haven, FL 33882; or by hand to the Winter Haven Chamber 401 Ave B N.W. Winter Haven, FL 33881 no later than 3 p.m. on Friday, July 27, 2012.

A completed application includes:

Resume or Biography
One letter of recommendation (The nomination request can be used as one letter of recommendation. No more than three will be accepted.)

*If you were nominated for a second year your previous application will be provided to you to update rather than filling out a blank application again.

Award Selection:

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of five judges, made up of four established business and community leaders and the current chair of the Winter Haven Chamber Foundation Board. Applicants will be judged based on the applicant’s answers to each question, level of professional achievement, demonstrated leadership and community impact. If additional information is needed, we will contact the applicant individually. Award winners will be announced at the banquet on August 28, 2012 at Polk State College.

Polk Emerging Leaders Awards
2012 Sponsors:

Ledger Media Group

Polk State College

State Farm Insurance

SunTrust Bank


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