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It’s that most wonderful time for Top Workplaces.

(Baltimore Sun Media snugs it in this week between Thanksgiving and when we all grow too distracted by the winter holidays — Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, the winter solstice, New Year’s.)

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But we too gather to celebrate, recognizing those companies, schools, nonprofits and other employers that do it right, that make their employees part of the mission and really want to go to work.

The Sun’s Top Workplaces is now in its ninth year. Once again, The Sun collaborated with Energage, an employee research and consulting firm based in Exton, Pennsylvania, outside Philadelphia. Energage, whose mission is to help employers create places where people want to work, works with many other U.S. news organizations on similar projects in their markets.

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The Sun and Energage solicited nominations together this past summer; then our partner surveyed the employees of companies that agreed to participate.

Energage analyzed the data to identify the Baltimore region’s Top Workplaces, scoring and ranking the results and dividing employers into small, midsize and large categories.

The Sun appreciates those employers who chose to participate this year, and especially those who have participated year after year. (I’m looking at you FutureCare, Notre Dame Preparatory School and KatzAbosch, who have been Top Workplaces since The Sun launched it in 2011.)

We also thank the leaders who took time out of their busy schedules to offer some advice about how they make their workplaces among the best in the region.

We hope you enjoy this year’s magazine, and if you don’t see your company listed here, you can push to make it better, participate next year and come join us.

So 'tis the season for Top Workplaces — and giving. Because, trust me, there are no Grinches among the bosses of the employers listed here.

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