The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama honored some of the Tuscaloosa area's foremost business and community leaders during their annual celebration Thursday night.

Tripp Powell of Powell Petroleum was named the 2019 Charles H. Land Member of the Year, the Chamber’s highest honor presented to an individual member.

Powell serves on the Chamber's board of directors and was an integral part of the relaunch of Young Tuscaloosa, a rapidly growing networking group intended to connect the region's under-40 professionals. Powell also leads the Community Corrections Board and is actively involved in the Takeoff TCL campaign to bring commercial air service to Tuscaloosa.

“Tripp Powell is a driven, committed leader, and West Alabama is fortunate to have him working on a wide range of concerns that will improve our community,” said Jim Page, President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama. “His commitment to our community’s young people sets a standard we can all follow, and his willingness to get out in front of important issues is a key character trait we need in our leadership.”

The Chamber's Leadership Award was awarded to Dr. Cynthia Warrick, the president of Stillman College since 2017. Page said Warrick has been transformational in that role, and has made the school's administration more accountable, improved outcomes for students and advanced new initiatives.

Buffalo-Rock Pepsi was presented the Robert C. Tanner Corporate Service Award, which recognizes the philanthropic efforts and community services of corporations in the area.

Other award winners included:

  • Dr. Charles Nash of the University of Alabama System, who received the Minority Business Council Trailblazer Award.
  • Allyson Cooper of University Medical Center, who was named the Chamber's Ambassador of the Year.
  • The Tuscaloosa SAFE Center, which was given the Non-Profit of the Year Award
  • Michele Coley of The Allstate Coley Agency; David Pass of the Sealy Companies; and Elizabeth Winter of Regions Bank, who all received Distinguished Service Awards.
  • Slade Johnston of Trips4Trade, who was presented the H. Pettus Randall Entrepreneurial Rising Star Award.