Brandon paid tribute to Tammy Holmberg and, by association, her husband, Paul, at the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce membership dinner at HCC at The Regent.
Holmberg received the 2011 Key Citizen of the Year Award, for her tireless work as a community minded business owner, with a slew of testimonials to her credit for the countless number of events she has supported through the years.
Holmberg, a former honorary mayor of Brandon, with her husband, Paul, are the owners of the Chick-fil-A restaurant in Lake Brandon Village on Causeway Boulevard.
"I didn't expect this," Tammy Holmberg said, in receiving her award, as noted in the video attached to this posting. "I just want to say thank you, and from the bottom of my heart. I just do what I do because I love people and I love my community."
Holmberg talked about the early days, when she and her husband moved to Brandon, in 1998.
"We didn't know a soul," she said. "We opened a little Chick-fil-A and we didn't know if it would be successful or not because it was on Lumsden, and who [at the time] ever heard of that road. And there were still cows, still grazing next door, when we opened."
Holmberg said she remembers that while her husband was out and about in town talking up the anticipated opening of the restaurant, she was back at the hiring trailer when Tom Reagin, then with the chamber, knocked on her door and asked if she'd like to join the organization.
"I said, 'Okay, sign us up,' " Tammy recalled, and when her husband returned, she said she wondered if she had done the right thing.
" 'Oh, that's all right,' " Holmberg said her husband told her. " ' That will be a good thing.' "
Indeed, it was, on many fronts. As Holmberg put it: "To have someone in your back corner saying it's okay to give away 1,000 sandwiches, or it's okay to do this [and that], it makes me look good," she said. "I'm up here getting the recognition but he should be along with me."
With those words, Holmberg got more than the award in hand; she got a rousing round of applause.