Forward Janesville: Announces award winners for its 22nd annual awards luncheon

Forward Janesville’s 22nd Annual Awards Luncheon is on April 5, 2023 and the award winners will be honored for their contributions to the community.

The Awards Luncheon recognizes and honors the businesses, organizations, and individual members that have made a positive impact in our community during the past year. There are nine award categories. This year, there are two Community Improvement awards being given. Those acknowledged at this year’s luncheon include:

  • Emerging Leader Award: Sean Knott, Baird
    • Award Sponsor: BMO Harris Bank
  • Community Improvement Award: GIFTS Men’s Shelter
    • Award Sponsor: Mercyhealth
  • Community Improvement Award: Humane Society of Southern Wisconsin
    • Award Sponsor: Mercyhealth
  • Educator of the Year Award: Kristin Fillhouer, UW-Whitewater Rock County
    • Award Sponsor: ABC Supply
  • Entrepreneur of the Year Award: Gracie Karpes, Girls Scouts of Wisconsin Badgerland
    • Award Sponsor: First National Bank and Trust Co.
  • Business of the Year (50 or fewer employees): Hagen CPA
    • Award Sponsor: Nowlan Law LLP
  • Business of the Year (50+ employees): KANDU Industries
    • Award Sponsor: Johnson Financial Group
  • Diversity Award: PremierBank
    • Award Sponsor: Minuteman Press
  • Ambassador of the Year Award: Liz Menz
    • Award Sponsor: Boomerang Home Rentals/KRS Investments
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Jeff Hazekamp
    • Award Sponsor: JP Cullen

The Annual Awards Luncheon will take place from 11am to 1:30pm at The Celtic House at Glen Erin Golf Course in Janesville. Parking for this event can be a challenge. New this year is additional parking at Revv Aviation. There will be a shuttle running before and after the event. Van Galder is sponsoring the shuttle and will be using its downtown trolley for transportation. Please register online via our website at

Forward Janesville, Inc. (FJI) is the Janesville area’s chamber of commerce. FJI leads private sector economic and community development efforts to ensure the continued health and prosperity of business and industry in Janesville and Rock County. To learn more about the organization and its activities, please visit the FJI website at