Small Business Community Heroes Award Launches in Pittsburgh

Direct Energy and Pittsburgh Magazine announce the launch of the first-ever Pittsburgh Small Business Community Heroes award program. Nominations are now being accepted and will close Sunday, May 19, 2013. The online nomination form can be found by visiting

The Small Business Community Heroes award program is designed to recognize the significant efforts of small business owners of companies with less than 100 employees whose voluntary contributions make their communities a better place to live. As an extension of an existing Direct Energy program that encourages employees to volunteer their time and energy to causes or organizations in their local communities, the Small Business Community Heroes award program honors small business owners who do just that.

“We couldn’t be happier to be working with Pittsburgh Magazine to bring this honorable award to Southwestern Pennsylvania,” said Todd Sandford, vice president of small business for Direct Energy. “Direct Energy has a major presence in Pittsburgh and we are dedicated to investing in the communities in which we live, work and serve our customers. We applaud all of the wonderful volunteers and look forward to recognizing those small business owners that devote their time for the greater good of the community.”

The award itself consists of:

  • $500 cash prize to the winner
  • $2,000 donation to the winner’s organization/cause of choice in their respective community
  • full page in the July issue of Pittsburgh Magazine

The Small Business Community Heroes award is open to all residents of communities in the Pittsburgh Magazine market areas. Individuals can either nominate themselves or be nominated by another individual or group. Nominations should be no longer than 500 words and must detail the specific contributions the small business owner has made to improve the community through volunteer service.

“We want to give back to the unsung heroes that make our region such a great place, and so we are thrilled to partner with Direct Energy on an initiative that helps us do so. It is our hope that our readers will participate by nominating a business person who truly exemplifies selflessness,” said Betsy Benson, publisher of Pittsburgh Magazine.

Nominations must be submitted by Sunday, May 19, 2013 by 11:59 p.m. A selection committee from Direct Energy and Pittsburgh Magazine will review all submissions, and the winner will be announced in June. Complete rules, the official nomination form and all other information are available online at

Added bonus: Direct Energy Business is committed to making businesses better and investing in the communities in which they serve. For each local business that enrolls with Direct Energy Business for 12 months, Direct Energy Business will make a $100 donation to one of three local charities: Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation’s Free Care Fund, Western Pennsylvania Humane Society or The Pittsburgh Promise. This opportunity is only available to those businesses currently served by Duquesne Light or West Penn Power.