The Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Meeting and Business Celebration sponsored by Lourdes and CSI was held at the Julian Carroll Convention Center on January 27 with a record crowd of more than 800 attendees.
Outgoing board chair Bruce Wilcox, President of Henry A. Petter Supply, officially passed the gavel to Tammy Zimmerman, President/CEO of Payment Plus, as the board chair for 2017. The Chamber also honored several area businesses and individuals with their annual awards:
- Young Leader of Western Kentucky – Ed and Meagan Musselman. This award is selected by the Four Rivers Business Journal.
- Leadership Paducah Alumnus of the Year – John A. Williams, Jr. This award is selected and presented by the Leadership Paducah Foundation.
- Chamber Volunteer of the Year – Tonya Goodale with Midas Hospitality
- Non-Profit Organization of the Year – Merryman House
- Entrepreneur of the Year – VUE with owners Carolyn Raney and Maggie Armon
- Small Business of the Year – Stone Lang Co. and owner Mike Stone
- Business of the Year – HealthWorks with owner/founder Dr. Kyle Turnbo
The theme for the evening was Making a Difference with guest speaker Steve Gilliland. Recognized as a master storyteller and comedian, Gilliland focused on how to positively influence people in every imaginable way. His message focused on three empowering dynamics: Purpose - It drives you!; Passion - It fuels you!; and Pride – It defines you!
As a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame, an honor bestowed on only 227 men and women worldwide, he can be heard daily on SiriusXM Radio’s Laugh USA. He is a prolific, accomplished author, evidenced by four of his books, including Making a Difference, perennially making the publisher’s bestseller list and his being named Author of the Year. He was named one of the Top 10 Motivational Speakers in 2015 by espeakers. He built a multimillion-dollar company from the ground up, which the Pittsburgh Business-Times named one of the fastest growing privately held companies in the region.
Suzanne Farmer (Lourdes) and Mike Mallory (WPSD Local 6) served as the emcees for evening.
The Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce is the region’s largest business advocacy organization with more than 1,000 member firms and is the fifth largest Chamber in the state. The Chamber was named “2011 Chamber of the Year” by the American Association of Chamber Executives, is 4-star accredited by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and is a Kentucky Certified Chamber.
Additional information about award winners:
2017 Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce Award Recipients Information
Note: All recipients must be a member of the Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce
Business of the Year – Two Categories – Attributes for this award included: possesses staying power, has seen company growth, and involvement in the community.
Business of the Year (more than 15 employees) – HealthWorks Medical LLC and founder/owner Dr. Kyle Turnbo
As one of the nomination letters stated, the winner of this award is often several generations old, but this company has reached an equitable level of meaningful impact in less than a decade. This clearly validates the impact of leadership, the degree by which the measured needs of care are being met across the region, and the heart-felt desire to serve upon which the company was founded.
Beginning with only four employees and a goal of simply taking care of people, this company today employs 52 professionals and has grown from one location to six locations. In 2000 Dr. Kyle Turnbo opened a private family practice in Paducah. As a result of the rapidly growing complexity and dramatic cost increases in healthcare forcing employers to either drop or reduce coverage, Dr. Turnbo envisioned a company that would partner directly with employers to provide comprehensive healthcare. In 2008 HealthWorks was founded with a local company who had asked him to take over the occupational and primary care needs of its employees and their dependents. HealthWorks has continued to see growth each year and additional services and locations have been added throughout the region in West Kentucky and Southern Illinois.
To quote one of the nominees about the CEO of HealthWorks: “I have had the privilege of knowing the CEO for over six years, seeing a highly motivated physician, effective leader, mentor in our community and how he has been able to grow this company’s outstanding reputation throughout the community.”
Small Business of the Year (15 or less employees) – Stone Lang Co. and Mike Stone, owner
Stone Lang Medical recently celebrated their 140th anniversary. The history of this business dates back to the late 1800’s when the company was founded by two brothers. The brothers were very active in the community with one of them serving as Mayor of Paducah and also as the McCracken County Judge. The business was originally located in downtown Paducah at 207 Broadway, moved to 213 Broadway and now is in the 26th block of Broadway. With only three location changes and two corporate name changes, this company has a very long history in Paducah. Today’s owner represents the fourth generation to help citizens of our region with improving their daily lives. Stone-Lang not only specializes in hearing aids but also in many other medical products and equipment.
Non-Profit Organization – Merryman House
They received a $1,000 award from sponsor AECOM.
In the words of their founder Merryman Kemp, “knowing the kindness, compassion and generosity of the people of western Kentucky, failure never entered my mind back in the late 70’s. The need was here and it wasn’t being met. We had a big vision, but we were realistic. We would have to start small.”
The Merryman House, originally known as Women Aware, began as a shelter, even using local homes, and has grown through the years into a comprehensive advocacy and support program. All services are confidential and free of charge with almost 800 clients per year. This organization with its sister non-profit, Cornerstone of Hope, Inc., employs 25 and will increase that number this year due to their expansion and new partner, Mountain Comprehensive Care., Inc.
In 2015 the group started its first ever capital campaign to build a new facility. In 2016, they acquired 13 acres of land and their partner (Mountain Comprehensive Care) purchased 13 additional acres to complete a 26 acre campus. Together the two agencies are planning to bring 30 jobs to the area with a residential substance abuse treatment for women and specialized care for victims of domestic violence.
Entrepreneur of the Year – VUE and owners Carolyn Raney and Maggie Armon
This award is open to Chamber members who established a business within the past five years, recognized for innovative products or services, demonstrates community involvement and exceptional performance and growth.
Since starting in 2014, the VUE Magazine has almost doubled their number of full time employees and added 15 contract employees and sales have grown by 200%. They have also been innovative in their technology usage with the VUE Magazine’s digital publication the only one in the region that is interactive. They focus on covering events of non-profit organizations and have gone from 25 events per month to as many as 65. They also expanded from printing 5,000 magazines to 9,000 in less than 3 years.
Chamber Volunteer of the Year – Tonya Goodale with Midas Hospitality
This award is presented to someone who has made significant contributions to the goals and mission of the Chamber, donated time and/or resources and embodies the ideals of volunteerism and provided leadership in a key area.
According to a statement in one of the multiple nominations for this award nominating her, “Tonya Goodale exemplifies the Chamber volunteer of the year.” Tonya arrives at 6:30 a.m. for every Chamber monthly breakfast to serve as a greeter at the door and in 2016 attended every (or almost every) ribbon cutting throughout the year. She is active with the Membership and Marketing Committee and has been active with the Total Resource Campaign. Additionally she is involved throughout the community and the surrounding area. She has never let any challenges slow her down or impact her positive attitude.
Leadership Paducah Alumnus of the Year – John A. Williams, Jr. with Wells Fargo and Leadership Paducah Class #6
This award is selected and presented by the Leadership Paducah Foundation. Criteria includes: sought out opportunities to improve the Paducah community; innovative; inspired others to assist in the process of accomplishing the vision; leads by example; provided encouragement and recognition to those who worked together to accomplish the goal.
John A. Williams Jr. was nominated and selected for this award for his leadership role in developing and building the Rotary Playground at the new Paducah Health Park. He was a member of Leadership Paducah Class #6. While serving as the President of the Rotary Club, he had an idea to have the Rotary Club take on some type of service project that would make a long lasting impact for our community. After gathering information and conducting research, the idea of a project to enhance the city’s new Health Park came alive. Not only did he serve as the visionary for the project, he was willing to take the risk and say yes to the challenge that our community could raise the money and then literally build the new playground from the ground up! He was on site every day from sun up to sun down and worked tirelessly to make sure it all came together.
Young Leaders of Western Kentucky – Ed and Meagan Musselman
Note: The Selection Committee decided to award the Musselmans as the Young Leaders jointly for this award. Ed Musselman and Meagan Musselman were both nominated and individually selected as finalists for the award.
They received a $1,000 continuing education award from the Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce.
Because of the contributions of the two of them, it was hard to separate for the award. They are entrepreneurs and owners of Musselman Properties, Coke Plant, Dry Ground Brewery and Mellow Mushroom. Meagan Musselman is also an associate professor at Murray State University.
It was believed that they represented a perfect pairing of passion and commitment; made an impact on Paducah’s expanding business landscape that is nothing short of historic; couples community service with a well-crafted entrepreneurial spirit; partners with many community organizations and Young Professionals to move Paducah forward; and has seamlessly blended civic pride with personal accomplishments.
Other finalists included:
- Lakilia Bedeau, Director of Youth Services, Paducah Public Schools
- Landee Bryant-Green, Executive Director, Paducah Art House Alliance
- Katie Englert, Owner, Compass Counseling and licensed professional clinical counselor
- Eri Gjergii, Product Manager, CSI
- Jonas Neihoff, President/Owner of Socially Present
- Matt Snow, Executive Director of Facilities with Baptist Health
- Chuck Tate, Director of Operations, Paducah-McCracken County Convention Center
- Monique Zuber, Administrator, United Way of Paducah-McCracken Co.