15th Annual Beacon Awards Highlight Miami's Business Accomplishments

May 10, 2017

(Miami, FL - May 10, 2017) - The 2017 Beacon Award Winners are exceptional achievers who have played important roles in Miami's evolution as a business destination, both historically and currently.

The Jay Malina Award, sponsored by Wells Fargo, is the most prestigious award of the 15th Annual Beacon Awards ceremony, which will be held on May 11 at the Hilton Downtown Miami.  Named after the late Jay T. Malina, founder of the One Community One Goal initiative from the 1990s, the award is presented to the local business leader who has made a significant impact on the community. 

This year's Jay Malina Award Winner, Robert Traurig, pioneered Miami's early growth as Miami-Dade County's premier land-use lawyer and facilitated the building of many local communities stretching from Downtown Miami and the Brickell Financial District to suburban Kendall. Known as "the father of land use law" in South Florida, Traurig co-founded the law firm Greenberg Traurig with Mel Greenberg and Larry Hoffman as they sought to serve Miami's growing business and development community. Traurig was also known as an active supporter of Miami-Dade's civic and charitable communities and a mentor for countless young lawyers.

Greenberg Traurig, which this year celebrates its 50th anniversary, has grown today to 2,000 attorneys in 38 locations worldwide. The firm's exponential international growth stands as a testimony to the strength of diversity in hiring and excellence in law.

Also exemplary of our community's continuous and cutting-edge growth, the 2017 Entrepreneurship Award Winner, The New Tropic, has pioneered a community engagement and news platform that inspires entrepreneurship and civic involvement. Launched just two years ago, its platform is now expanding to other cities. 

The popular newsletter, which boasts more than 30,000 subscribers, has taken its Miami-based model to Seattle. The New Tropic has evolved into one of the most relevant and essential digital publications in Miami with its focus on helping fellow locals curate, navigate, and explore Miami through storytelling, awareness, and events.  Of particular relevance to the Miami-Dade Beacon Council's mission and its "Connect and Grow" innovation initiative is the New Tropic's coverage of Miami's startup community.

About 500 business and community leaders are expected to attend the 15th Annual Beacon Awards to honor these and other local corporate citizens and organizations that have strengthened the Miami-Dade economy through innovative business endeavors across industries.

 "We are honored to shine a light on the people who drive our economy and make Miami a global business destination," the Miami-Dade Beacon Council Chair Jaret L. Davis said. "Each successful business has a direct and indirect impact that is felt throughout our community and in some cases beyond it."

Following are the 2017 Beacon Award Winners:

The Distinguished Award winners are:

  • Robert Traurig: Jay Malina Award, sponsored by Wells Fargo
  • Wyncode Academy: Education and Talent Development, sponsored by Bank of America
  • CareerSource South Florida: Judges' Award, sponsored by Baptist Health South Florida
  • Bank of America: Corporate Social Responsibility, sponsored by Florida Blue
  • The New Tropic: Entrepreneurship Award, sponsored by the Miami Herald
  • Miami Cancer Institute at Baptist Health South Florida: Make it Miami Award, sponsored by Robins & Morton

The Industry Award winners are:

  • ATR Americas: Aviation, sponsored by AVE, Aviation and Commerce Centre
  • BankUnited: Banking & Finance, sponsored by Carlton Fields
  • Golin: Creative Design, sponsored by American Airlines
  • Crystal Cruises: Hospitality & Tourism, sponsored by Dosal Tobacco
  • Catalyst Pharmaceuticals: Life Sciences & Healthcare, sponsored by Cherry Bekaert 
  • Invizio: Small Business, sponsored by Florida Power & Light
  • Mi9 Retail: Technology, sponsored by Cozen O'Conner
  • Interport Logistics: Trade & Logistics, sponsored by SunTrust

Winners were chosen by the Judges' Committee, which included the Miami-Dade Beacon Council Chair, Past Chairs and Chair-Elect. 

The evaluation criteria included: job creation, capital investment, commitment to innovation and impact on Miami-Dade's business community.

The Beacon Awards are also made possible by the following sustaining investors: Miami Herald, American Airlines and MBF Healthcare Partners and partners including Multivision Video and Film. This year's moderator will be Tom Hudson, Vice President of News and Special Correspondent at WLRN.

Event information:

  • 5:30 p.m. Registration, 6 p.m. Cocktail Reception, 7 p.m. Program
  • Individual tickets: $350 Members, $375 Non-Members
  • Corporate Tables: $3,500 members, $3,750 Non-Members

About The Beacon Awards

The Beacon Awards are a component of the current One Community One Goal (OCOG) initiative to diversify the local economy and promote higher-paying jobs. OCOG was updated from the 1998 original founded and co-chaired by the late Jay T. Malina. Proceeds help fund the Miami-Dade Beacon Council's efforts on behalf of County businesses to promote the community's assets to the world, diversify our economy and assist local companies with expansion needs.

About the Miami-Dade Beacon Council

The Miami-Dade Beacon Council is the county's official economic development partnership. The not-for-profit public-private organization focuses on job creation and economic growth. Since 1985, the organization has assisted more than 1,000 businesses that have created nearly 67,000 direct jobs and added more than $4.3 billion in new capital investments. It accomplishes this by marketing Miami-Dade as a world-class business location, growing local companies and shaping the local economy's future. For more information, visit www.beaconcouncil.com