ICCR Achievement Awards – An Afternoon For Reflection & Connection

by Florinda Gjypi – (November 2, 2023) Thursday, November 2nd wasn’t just a nice sunny day in upstate New York for the International Center of The Capital Region (ICCR), as it happened to consist of the organization’s Achievement Awards (AA) Ceremony—one of their most impactful annual events.  

The well-attended event took place at the Hilton Garden Inn in Clifton Park. Flags from countries all over the world were set throughout the conference hall to emphasize the diverse environment of the ceremony. 

Some of the attendees came dressed in theme as they adorned their nation’s traditional attire, which aided in holding an extremely culturally inclusive atmosphere.

This year’s individual honorees were Yono and Donna Purnomo for the Business and Entrepreneurship award, Senator Neil Breslin for the Volunteer of the Year award, Ashok Adikoppula for Civic Engagement and Citizenship award, Tina Omorogbe for Community Service and Philanthropy award, and Victor Holovashchenko for the Distinguished Career award. 

Receiving newly formed awards this year, two organization honorees were the Chinese Community Center—which received the Global Citizenship award, and Festival of Nations, which received the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility and Belonging award. 

“ICCR serves a very important mission. Not only do they bring all these diverse cultures together in the Capital Region, but they also acknowledge all the hard work that these individuals and organizations do on a daily basis. It is an honor to be here and to receive this award,” Manoj Amera, founder of Festival of Nations, a 52-year old cultural event held in the Capital Region. 

All honorees were present to get their awards and received them ICCR’s Executive Director Holly Planells McKenna. 

“Being able to host the Achievement Awards ceremony again is a significant event because it means acknowledging all the diverse cultures and communities within the Capital Region that we work with,” Planells McKenna said. “They are such an important part of our community and being here celebrating them today is very significant for us as an organization.”