That’s Todd Carden of Elliott Bay Brewery and Pub, — a mainstay in The Junction for 12 years — accepting the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce‘s “Business of the Year” award this morning. WSCC members and guests gathered at Salty’s on Alki for the annual awards breakfast, at which County Council Chair Dow Constantine presented the awards; he was one of three political leaders in attendance, along with City Councilmembers Tom Rasmussen and Nick Licata. Introducing EBB owner Carden, Constantine listed the company’s distinctions, particularly in environmental stewardship — first King County brewery to go organic, first in Washington with two organic breweries (there’s an EBB in Burien too), a trailblazing composting program. Carden said he was happy to first hear of the award (reported here March 11) but it didn’t really sink in until he and his wife were visiting stops on the West Seattle Art Walk the next night and “people started congratulating me left and right.”
Also honored this morning — the Community Service Award recipient, Robinson Newspapers founder Jerry Robinson (who, it was revealed after his acceptance speech, turns 89 next Monday). With the trademark humor familiar to readers of his column, he quipped that others might have deserved the honor more — perhaps Rolf Neslund, the ship captain whose collision with the old West Seattle Bridge in 1978 broke a longrunning logjam over whether to build a new one. (Elliott Bay proprietor Carden later joked he might have to name a future beer after Neslund.) Jerry Robinson founded the White Center News in 1952 and bought the West Seattle Herald in 1974; at one point, not that many years ago, he tried to retire, but admitted he felt a bit “useless” in his temporary life of leisure, saying, “Nothing is as fulfilling” as being of service to others.
The West Seattle Chamber of Commerce’s regular monthly meetings are listed on its website at wschamber.com.