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Speech Hens among 2024’s 1Awards winners

Local speech-language pathology clinic selected as a winner in FirstOntario’s annual business competition

Photo of Speech Hens team in front of their downtown Simcoe-based Speech-Language Pathology Services clinic.

Speech Hens was among four businesses that received a 2024 1Award from FirstOntario Credit Union in their annual contest. The winners were announced at a gala event on May 22.

Located on Argyle Street in downtown Simcoe, Speech Hens is a private speech and language clinic co-owned by Laura Downey and Marianne Ward. The clinic boasts a team of registered speech-language pathologists, communicative disorders assistants, and support staff. Their mission is to provide comprehensive speech and language services to individuals of all ages. They help clients improve their communication skills and overall quality of life.

About the 1Awards

1Award on reception desk in Speech Hens office.The 1Awards put a spotlight on small businesses by offering cash and in-kind services to support future success. Winning this prestigious award highlights the dedication and hard work of small business owners and their contribution to the community.

The four businesses chosen as winners for 2024 shared $25,000 in cash and $175,000 in professional, in-kind services provided by 1Awards partners. These partners include local businesses and service providers who offer valuable resources such as marketing, legal services, and business consulting to help the winners grow and thrive. The other businesses joining Speech Hens in this year’s winners circle were Hamilton’s Barton Lettuce, DSRT Co., and Nonno’s Plant-Based Butcher.

Eligible businesses for the 1Awards must have 50 employees or less and have been in business for at least 24 months. The business must demonstrate measurable growth, such as workforce expansion, innovation, and community impact. This year’s winners exemplified these qualities, showcasing their ability to innovate, grow, and positively influence their communities.

Impact for Speech Hens

Winning the 1Award is a significant achievement for the clinic. It not only provides them with financial support but also valuable professional services. These resources will help them continue to grow and serve the community effectively. Laura Downey and Marianne Ward expressed their gratitude for the recognition and support. They emphasized how it will enable them to reach more clients and make a greater impact.

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