Business Advocate of the Year Sam English of CIE Partners is interviewed by Lynda McNutt Foster of Wheeler Broadcasting.^
Magnets USA of Roanoke has been named the Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year. The producer and seller of quality marketing and promotional magnet products was recognized at the Chamber’s 24th Annual Small Business Awards dinner held October 5 at The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center with an attendance of nearly 550.
The annual awards showcase the accomplishments of the small business sector which is composed of 99 percent of the area’s business community.
In just 20 years, Magnets USA has grown from a one-person operation to a staff of 60 employees who produce and sell marketing and promotional magnetic products from business card magnets to padded calendars. From its beginnings, Magnets USA has grown to become the major promotional magnet supplier for the real estate industry, as well as serving many other small businesses.
Award winners by category are:
Small Business Advocate: Sam English, partner, CIE Partners (Valley Business FRONT editor and co-founder Dan Smith was nominated for the sixth time in this category. He insists he is "the Susan Lucci of Business Advocacy).
Small Business Veteran of the Year: Dr. Garrett Thompson, Thompson Family Chiropractic
Construction/Real Estate: Breakell Inc. has continued to grow and prosper in economically challenging times while being a leader in the “green” construction initiative.
Manufacturing: The Mennel Milling Company of Virginia is the largest processer of Virginian grown wheat in the Commonwealth.
Micro-Business: All Star Impressions is the premier recognition awards provider in Southwest Virginia with one-of-a-kind awards, gifts, signs and custom-designed pieces.
Technology: HyperGen Inc. provides customized and specialized IT services and software solutions to clients throughout the nation.
Business-to-Business Services: Magnets USA.
Business-to-Consumer Services: SERVPRO of Roanoke, Montgomery & Pulaski Counties provides specialty cleaning services, such as fire and water clean-up and restoration.
Wholesale/Retail: chocolatepaper is the ultimate indulgence of nectar and pulp, selling gourmet chocolates, distinctive greeting cards, and gifts at its two Roanoke locations.
Legacy Award: Lanford Brothers Company has operated as a general contractor specializing in highway and industrial asset maintenance for the past 50 years.
Not-For-Profit Arts & Culture: Virginia Museum of Transportation celebrates and preserves the hard work and ingenuity of the transportation industry.
Not-For-Profit Health & Human Services: The Rescue Mission of Roanoke has extended a helping hand by offering emergency shelter, meals, a free clinic, and educational assistance to the homeless for over six decades.
Previous small business of the year winners include Home Instead Senior Care (2009), Virginia Prosthetics (2008), Luna Innovations (2007), Blue Ridge Medical Imaging (2006), Plastics One (2005), Virginia Furniture Market (2004), and R & K Engineering (2003). The Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce, established in 1889, has more than 1,200 member firms. The Chamber serves its members with advocacy, networking, information, and business assistance programs that maintain a strong business climate in the Greater Roanoke Region.