ELEVATOR WORLD presents the winning companies of the third annual competition for excellence in the North American elevator industry.

Last year’s National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC) Convention & Expo in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is where winners of the second-annual Ellies Awards stopped by the ELEVATOR WORLD booth to hold their trophies and pose for photos. This year, the scenario was much different, with the pandemic bringing an end to nearly all events and necessitating changes in many aspects of our personal and professional lives. Zoom meetings have replaced face-to-face interactions; most of our business is done over the phone and online.

What hasn’t changed is the professionalism, leadership and enthusiasm of players in the North American elevator industry, reflected in the nominations EW received for the third-annual contest. This year’s iteration featured several repeat — including triple — winners, a few new faces and both independent players and global OEMs. Two new categories yielded new faces representing JNKM Design Group/Elevator Scene Studio (Best Elevator Interior Design/Finishes) of Toronto and UNITEC Parts Co. (Best Supplier: Parts) of Bloomfield, Connecticut.

Rather than in-person trophy presentations, EW mailed the trophies to the winners, who gathered online for Zoom photos (see sidebar), posed solo or with skeleton crews or placed their trophies with marketing materials. It was a far cry from last year’s celebrations, but pride was stronger than ever.

Customers and employees praised teams and individuals for their integrity, communication, dedication to safety, willingness to embrace technology and, last but not least, generosity and compassion during a trying time. Many said our winners treat both customers and employees like family, and accounts were given about employers that kept everyone on payroll despite financial challenges and consistently gave back to the communities in which they operate.

There is no guarantee the 2021 Ellies trophy presentations will take place in person at NAEC’s planned event in Atlantic City, New Jersey. What is guaranteed is that our elevator world will remain strong, safe, reliable and resilient.