Columbia Fresh Produce honored for giving back


A Walla Walla small business was in the company of a couple of Washington state giants Tuesday as they were celebrated by the secretary of state for giving back to their communities.

Columbia Fresh Produce was one of six businesses around the state awarded by Secretary of State Kim Wyman with the 2013 Corporations for Communities Award. The recognition honors Washington businesses that make helping their communities a priority.

Honorees during Tuesday’s event were Federal Way-based Weyerhaeuser, furniture chain IKEA, Town Auto Group of Wenatchee, McClain Insurance Services of Everett and Walla Walla’s Columbia Fresh Produce. Representatives of each business were presented with a certificate and a National Association of Secretaries of State Medallion Award, recognizing civic engagement, voter education efforts, government services and a commitment to giving back to the community.

“It’s such an honor for me to present these deserving companies with this award,” Wyman was quoted in her office’s blog post. “There are so many businesses, big and small, that make a difference by donating money, items or volunteers toward worthy causes. It makes me proud that we have so many generous companies here in Washington.”

Each business was singled out for its contributions. The six-employee Columbia Fresh Produce, operated by founder and Chief Executive Officer Dewight Hall, was nominated because of its work obtaining oversupply produce for packaging and delivery to those in need. It has also partnered with the Salvation Army on a new building, including a food bank. It is a sponsor of youth programs at the Walla Walla County Fair & Frontier Days and supports several local nonprofit groups.

Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at or 526-8321.


widmer 1 year, 3 months ago

So, so deserved. Columbia Fresh Produce is quietly philanthropic, touching hundreds of Walla Walla Valley lives, even thousands.


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