Two special “captain’s picks” awards were presented at the annual Lord Mayor’s Commendations on August 24.
On the night, Lord Mayor Robert Doyle surprised Kay Craddock and Don Parsons for their long-term support of the program, which recognises the contribution of small business to the life of the city.
Ms Craddock co-founded the commendations 10 years ago and, this year, accepted a gold commendation herself in recognition of more than 40 years in business within the City of Melbourne.
Mr Parsons recently retired from his long-term role as president of the Collins Street Precinct and has had a deep involvement with retailing in the city.
This year a further 63 small business owners were inducted into a growing group of “commendees”. To qualify, small business owners must have conducted business within the municipality for at least 10 years.
Cr Doyle described Ms Craddock and Mr Parsons as local legends.
Ms Craddock had chaired the commendations’ steering group since its inception but is this year stepping down from the role.
Cr Doyle said: “Kay understands the challenges that small business faces. She has been a small business proprietor in the City of Melbourne for nearly 50 years, running a second-hand / antiquarian bookstore.”
“Her gold commendation this evening is testament to her dedication and exceptional entrepreneurial skills.”
Cr Doyle remarked that very few people knew more about retailing in Melbourne than Mr Parsons.
“Don is recognised for his dedication and services to the retail industry in Melbourne,” Cr Doyle said.
“Don became centre manager of the historic Block Arcade for the Kearney Family of Queensland in 1993. He is also a past president of the Collins Street Precinct Group and past chair of the CBD PCCC.”