The Castle Group, a Boston-based public relations, event management and marketing firm celebrating its 25th year in business, has been named the 2021 Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year Champion, which celebrates a successful small business that is also working to strengthen and advocate for the small business community. This award comes on the heels of Castle’s recognition as a 2021 Forbes Top 200 PR firm, out of more than 5,000 firms reviewed.
“Congratulations to Sandy and Wendy and the team at The Castle Group,” said James E. Rooney, President and CEO of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce. “Castle has always been a champion for the diverse, small business community, and I’m proud that the Chamber is recognizing their important advocacy and contributions with the Small Business Champion Award.”
“The same values we’ve brought to our work every day since day one – passion, creativity, proactivity and our scrappy spirit – helped us meet the challenges of the past year, not just to survive, but to grow meaningfully,” said Sandy Lish, Castle principal and co-founder. “Over the past year, more than ever, we doubled down on our commitment to support and advocate for other businesses and nonprofits, especially those owned and led by women and minorities. Our businesses are critical to our region’s economy, and we’re grateful to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce for recognizing that, honored to be in fantastic company with the winners in the other categories, and proud of our incredible Castle family.”
“This award is for our entire Castle team, who worked hard day in and day out to ensure that we thrived despite the challenges of the past 18 months,” said Wendy Spivak, Castle principal and co-founder. “We hope to exemplify the value of relationships, and, in particular, the moral and business imperative to be a true community partner. Businesses of any size can make a tremendous impact. This honor is a wonderful recognition of the ability of small businesses to meet the challenges of the moment, and to represent staying power despite changing, and sometimes challenging, circumstances.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Castle’s events business transitioned rapidly to remote events, learning and interacting with new technology at the same time that they were implementing it for client events. On the public relations side, Castle helped more than 60 clients navigate the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic, developing both internal and external communications strategies and helping organizations address connected issues including racial equity, diversity and inclusion.
The company also redoubled its efforts on DE&I and employee health and wellness, committing to anti-racist workplace discussions and training and implementing a more flexible time off policy to help employees balance the challenges of working from home during the pandemic.
Castle has been a Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce member for many years. Lish has been honored with the Chamber’s Pinnacle Award for Entrepreneurship and serves on its Board of Directors and Executive Committee and Castle EVP Hilary Allard is a long-serving member of its Women’s Network Advisory Board.
Over the last 25 years, Castle has developed long-term valued partnerships with other small businesses. Along with the more than 50 global “sister and brother” agencies in Castle’s proprietary Public Relations Global Network, Castle collaborates on best practices and business development, particularly in the areas of mentorship, DE&I, events and crisis management. Castle is known for consistently punching above its weight, with deep connections in the business, nonprofit and public sectors, providing support for many organizations both publicly and behind the scenes. Castle supports small businesses in particular through its relationships with the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, Center For Women & Enterprise, Initiative For a Competitive Inner City, Foundation For Business Equity, Latino Equity Fund and many others.
Castle also wishes to congratulate all the other 2021 Small Business of the Year winners: Coils to Locs (Diversity & Inclusion), Strategy Matters (Cultural Excellence), Forward Financing (Community Impact), tonneson + co (Innovation & Growth) and Moonshine 152 (CEO Leadership).