Interviews reveal so much about area business women

Last updated: May 15. 2014 4:11PM - 964 Views

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I will remember for some time Monday, May 5.

The Brown County Chamber of Commerce presented me with their Horizon Award on that date and I certainly want to show my appreciation.

The Horizon Award goes to the person who has been around a while. That person is active in the Chamber of Commerce and in the community. Among the past winners are Stan Purdy, Ned Lodwick, Donald “Doc” Wahl and Dwight Marriott to name just a few. All of these are folks who have done many interesting and great things.

I certainly was surprised by my sudden recognition. I have certainly not been around long enough to do all the great things these people have done. But like I said, I am appreciative.

It’s been over 10 years since The News Democrat and The Ripley Bee began sponsoring the Brown County Business Woman of the Year recognition program during the Chamber’s Spring Dinner. We have honored many women for their contributions to the business community. I certainly want to congratulate all of them.

In my mind all of the nominees are winners. First, you have to be nominated by readers, then you have to be selected by a committee to be one of the nominees.

I know everyone looks forward to see who the winner is going to be (we pick one from the group), but it is a bittersweet moment for me because I generally know these people and I agonize for the ones that didn’t get it. I always hope the committee did not offend anyone. Often the choice between the nominees is impossible. Like choosing between apples and oranges.

What I leave the evening with, and hope those that attend leave with the same feeling, is a greater understanding of the women. Some of the stories are just marvelous.

This year’s winner was Linda Sawyers of Paul Hall and Associates. I really didn’t know Linda until this event and her nomination, but it was certainly interesting to learn how she developed her sales and service ideology. I think many people in the room associated with how she learned her work ethic farming tobacco and milking cows. My favorite part was how she got her job. Paul Hall was so impressed with her positive attitude as a bank teller that he encouraged her to interview for a full time job with his office. What do we tell our young people about the effect of a positive attitude?

Nancy Knabb and Jennifer Wilcox were equally as interesting. Nancy has been cutting hair in Sardinia for a long time. Some of the stories she told were priceless and reflected some of the changes in our society over the years. People from a three county area have gone to Nancy to get their hair done.

To be considered for Business Woman of the Year you have to either live in the county or have your business in the county. Many are considered for their longtime service to the community, others on what they did in 2013.

Wilcox has made a big impact as principal at Georgetown Elementary in a short amount of time. The fact that she has become a trained fireman to serve with her husband is just so interesting.

There are many interesting people in the world. It’s true you can point at a name in a phone book randomly and come up with an interesting story to tell about that person. It’s my hope over the coming years we can find those stories and we can write great things about people. If you know of someone interesting that would make a good story, send me an email at striplett@civitasmedia.com or just call the office and leave the name and the reason that person would make a good story.

We like good stories.

Steve Triplett is the content manager for this newspaper. He may be reached at striplett@civitasmedia.com.

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