The 3rd Annual “Thank You” Awards Ceremony May 10, 2017 at The Gem Theatre Downtown Detroit.

The 3rd Annual “Thank You” Awards Ceremony May 10, 2017 at The Gem Theatre Downtown Detroit.


By Robere Lett | Publisher


3rd Annual “Thank You” Awards Ceremony
Recognizes Detroit Neighborhood Small Business Owners
Bringing Downtown, Midtown and Neighborhood Businesses Together
(Featuring a performance by Ballet Detroit)

Quicken Loans, Detroit Development Fund, DTE Energy Foundation and Detroit Smart Pages Newspaper today announced that the 3rd annual “Thank You” Awards Ceremony, recognizing Detroit neighborhood small businesses will be held Wednesday, May 10, 2017, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Gem Theater located at 333 Madison St. in Detroit.

More than 40 small neighborhood businesses throughout the city will be recognized and honored for their investment, commitment and dedication to the communities and customers they serve. Lauren Sanders, former WDIV anchor, and native Detroiter will serve as Mistress of Ceremony and several city officials, community leaders and business owners including Detroit Council President Brenda Jones, Charlie Beckham, Group Executive city of Detroit, Bill Ross, President of the Booker T. Washington Business Association, Ed Deeb, Founder of Detroit Metro Youth Day, Paul Wasserman, owner of Henry the Hatter, Camille Walker-Banks, Executive Director Wayne State University, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, and Ron Fournier, Publisher of Crain’s Detroit Business will be among the award Presenters.

“Our goal is to bring together corporations, community leaders, and city officials to meet, greet and thank the business owners who have been instrumental in the development and resurgence that’s now taking place in the city,” said Beverly Smith, publisher of Detroit Smart Pages Newspaper and founder of the “Thank You” Awards.

To highlight the evening, the audience will be entertained with a special performance by Ballet Detroit under the direction of Ballet Master, Sergey Rayevskiy of the Detroit Opera House and video presentations of business owners highlighting their long history in the city of Detroit.

“The Detroit Development Fund is pleased to once again help sponsor the Thank You Awards and Reception. It is great to see the new businesses opening in Detroit, but it is also good to take time to honor many Detroit businesses that have been here for several years and have gone through the many ups and downs in the economy. The businesses we are recognizing are truly the backbone of the Detroit business community,” said Ray Waters.

Quicken Loans, DTE Energy Foundation and Detroit Developing Fund are hosting sponsors for this year’s event. Other sponsors include Fifth Third Bank, Clark Hill, PLC, Wayne State Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, Radio One, 910am Superstation, Voiceover Productions, Heritage Optical and the Michigan Chronicle.

“The DTE Energy Foundation supports organizations that create a culture of innovation through entrepreneurship, accelerate economic growth, as well as strengthen and develop businesses that enhance Detroit and its resurgence,” said Faye Nelson, vice president at DTE Energy, and board chair and president of the DTE Energy Foundation. “Many of the businesses that will be honored during the Thank You Awards have embodied these ideals and continue to contribute to Detroit’s revitalization.”

Someone once said, “If downtown is the heart of Detroit, then the neighborhoods are the soul of the city.” If that’s true, then few events breathe more energy and life into the soul of the Motor City more than the annual Detroit “Thank You” Awards. Beverly Smith took a simple idea and turned it into a yearly, must attend, grassroots business reunion that celebrates the never-say-die spirit of our city. If you want to be inspired, make sure you attend this wonderful Detroit tradition. Thank you for caring, Bev, and good luck! Chuck Stokes, Editorial Director, WXYZ.

The honorees represent a cross section of businesses throughout the city including salon owners, grocery stores, retailers, restaurants, and non-profit organizations.
• ABS Storage and Supply
• Hamilton Anderson Associates
• Louis Ace Hardware
• M & D Pharmacy
• Heritage Optical Eye Care Center
• Golden Touch Beauty Salon
• Above & Beyond Learning Childcare
• Las Galanes Restaurant
• Express Quick Lube and Auto Repair
• The Turkey Grill
• Busy Bee Hardware
• Mario’s Detroit
• The Traffic Jam & Snug Restaurant
• Parks Old Style Bar-B-Que
• Building Better Men
• Capers Restaurant
• Brownie’s Muffler Service
• Heavyweight Cuts
• Buddy’s Pizza
• Skills Ville
• Livernois-Davison Florist

“Starting and maintaining a small business takes determination, tenacity, and ingenuity,” said Steve Ogden, Quicken Loans Vice President. “The Thank You Awards take the time to recognize the people and stories behind the small business community in Detroit and give all of us an opportunity to learn from these entrepreneurs while acknowledging their achievements in contributing to the economic, social and cultural success of our city.”

The evening will consist of a networking reception, buffet dinner, awards ceremony, and entertainment. Tickets are available to the public for $35 and can be purchased online at or one of the following Detroit locations: Hot Sam’s Clothier, 127 Monroe, 313-961-6779; Times Square Clothier, 19330 Livernois, 313-342-9005 and All About Technology, 6450 Michigan Avenue, 313-218-4888 and Prince Valley Market at 5931 Michigan Avenue, 313-898-9717.

For more information, sponsorship’s or interviews, please contact Beverly Smith at 313-268-3523. Please visit for a list of all honorees since 2015, photos and video presentations.


About The “Thank You” Awards
The “Thank You” Awards was founded in 2015 by Beverly Smith with the collaboration of Quicken Loans and Detroit Development Fund as an annual Awards Ceremony recognizing Detroit neighborhood businesses that have remained in the city through all the challenging times making it possible for the new development and resurgence that is now taking place in the city. The Awards Ceremony is a citywide effort to say “Thank You” from city officials and community leaders for their longevity, community involvement and products and services to the residents of Detroit. The one-of-a-kind event has proven to be the only Awards Ceremony recognizing businesses that stretch across the city and across ethnicities bringing downtown, midtown and neighborhood businesses together. The Awards Ceremony has honored 50 businesses each year that really appreciate this recognition.

About Ballet Detroit
Founded in 2014, by acclaimed Artistic Director and Ballet Master, Sergey Rayevskiy, Ballet Detroit brings together the highest quality instructors from around the world to attain the training, exposure, and performances required to weave this remarkable ballet opportunity into the fabric of Detroit’s rich artistic community. The Ballet Detroit Foundation is a non-profit organization that offers a select group of exceptional ballet students from the Detroit metropolitan area the opportunity to receive a world-class Vaganova method classical ballet education, in the beautiful setting of the Detroit Opera House.

As a non-profit organization, Ballet Detroit supports Detroit and southeast Michigan youth with instruction and the support they need to flourish not only as classically-trained ballet dancers but also as students. To donate to help continue to bring this cultural and rigorous training and instruction to Detroit area youth, visit Ballet Detroit is located at 1526 Broadway St. Call 409-422-5538 (409-4BALLET) or email or


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