Randy Adams (left) accepts congratulations from Pat Ryan of Citizens National Bank at Friday’s 1st Annual Small Business of the Year award recognition.
Randy Adams (left) accepts congratulations from Pat Ryan of Citizens National Bank at Friday’s 1st Annual Small Business of the Year award recognition.
By ED GEBERT

Times Bulletin news writer

egebert@timesbullein.com

VAN WERT COUNTY - KAM Manufacturing, Inc. was named Small Business of the Year Friday, capping Business Appreciation Week throughout Van Wert County.

The First Annual Van Wert Area Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year Award was presented at a luncheon at JEHMM'S Banquet Center.

KAM Manufacturing was selected over the other two finalists, P & R Home IV Service and Straightline Body and Paint.

In accepting the award, Randy Adams thanked co-sponsors Citizens National Bank and the Times Bulletin and acknowledged the other two finalists for the award. He also thanked all the employees, and added, "KAM is on the map because of Kim (Adams). It was her drive and determination that made the difference."

KAM Manufacturing will now be nominated for the U. S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Award.

The other two finalists were also recognized. Plaques were given to Phil and Robin Farris of P & R, and to Tom and Kelly Andersen of Straightline.

Jodie Perry, Chamber executive director, told the attendees, "This started months and months ago at a board meeting. Fifteen businesses were nominated back in July. It was then up to each of them to apply."

Of the fifteen nominated, six filled out the application and three of those stood out to those on the committee. Those three became the finalists.

Any Van Wert County business with fewer than 250 employees and annual gross receipts of less than $10 million is eligible to be nominated.

The businesses were evaluated on five general criteria from the information submitted in the application: financial performance and business history, employee practices, community involvement, customer service, and entrepreneurship.

Those attending the luncheon were treated to video profiles of each of the three finalists.

The profiles were produced by Van Wert High School students and their advisor Kevin McGonagle. The students working on the project were Kory Allenbaugh, Lindsey Muhlenkamp, Joe Balyeat, Kayla Black, Tiffany Hooper, and Nathan Chavarria.