KSBDC honors 16 businesses on 20th anniversary


Wally Kearns
KSBDC Director
(785) 296-6514
Regional Centers listed below
3/18/04 ks

TOPEKA, KS -- The Kansas Small Business Development Center and its eight regional centers and two outreach centers honored 16 small businesses during a day-long celebration of its 20th anniversary on Wednesday in the state Capitol.

The 2003 Emerging and Existing Businesses of the Year were recognized during the KSBDC's 20th anniversary luncheon.

"Entrepreneurs and small businesses are vitally important to the Kansas economy and Kansas," said Wally Kearns, state director of the KSBDC. He noted that small businesses employ 53.5 percent of the non-farm workforce in Kansas; there are 65,600 small businesses with employees in Kansas, and another 116,000 small businesses in Kansas that employ only the owner; and more than 94 percent of the businesses in Kansas have 50 employees or less.

"As a result of the taxes you pay, you and your business provide Kansans the opportunity to drive on great highways, attend the best educational institutions, and overall, have a quality of life unparalleled in this great country," Kearns told the business owners. "For that we thank you."

Dr. Edward H. Hammond, president of Fort Hays State University, served as master of ceremonies at an afternoon reception on the second floor of the Capitol in the wing north of the rotunda. Both the luncheon and the reception were sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield and the Prairie Band Pottawatomie Nation.

Fort Hays State University serves as the administrator of the KSBDC network, which is a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Kansas Department of Commerce.

The highlight of the afternoon ceremony was the presentation of plaques to 16 Kansas businesses by Ken Daniels, state chair of the National Federation of Independent Business, and by Sen. Karin Brownlee, a member of the KSBDC advisory board. Half of the awards were for Existing Business of the Year from each of the KSBDC's eight regions, and the other half were for Emerging Business of the Year from each of the eight regions.

In addition, Kay Lampe of the KSBDC regional center at Johnson County Community College received the Association of Small Business Development Center's Star Performer Award.

The Regional Centers are Emporia State University, 1320 C of E Dr., (620) 341-5308; Fort Hays State University, 109 W. 19th St., (785) 628-6786; Garden City Community College, 801 Campus Drive, (620) 276-9632; Johnson County Community College, 309 Carlsen Center, 12345 College Blvd., (913) 469-3878; Pittsburg State University, Shirk Hall, 1501 S. Joplin, (620) 235-4920; University of Kansas, Suite 104, 734 Vermont, (785) 843-8844; Washburn University, Suite 110, 120 SE Sixth St., (785) 234-3235; and Wichita State University, Metropolitan Complex, 1845 Fairmount, (316) 978-3193. The two outreach centers are Cloud County Community College, 2221 Campus Dr., Concordia, (800) 729 5101; and the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce, 510 Poyntz Ave., (785) 587-9917.

The 2003 Existing Business of the Year honorees were Guion's Showcase, Emporia (ESU); Classic Quality Body Shop, Hays (FHSU); Herb's Carryout, Garden City (GCCC); Shear Madness, Overland Park (JCCC); Simply Wireless, Ottawa (KU); Midwest Plastics Company, Inc., Cherryvale (PSU); Hi-Tech Interiors, Inc., Manhattan (WU); and Christian Dimension, Wichita (WSU).

The 2003 Emerging Business of the Year honorees were High Gear Cyclery & Fitness, Emporia (ESU); Formation Plastics, Quinter (FHSU); Marchel Ranch, Dodge City (GCCC); Craig Safety, Lenexa (JCCC); Inter-State Wireless, Basehor (KU); Echelon Interiors, Girard (PSU); Fisher's Fixtures, Topeka (WU); and Cloud County Tea Company, Clyde (WSU/CCCC).

Note to editors/news directors: Profiles are enclosed for honored businesses in your area. If you wish to receive additional profiles, please contact either the KSBDC or the FHSU Office of University Relations.

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Office of University Relations   |  600 Park Street   |  Hays, KS  67601-4099
(785) 628-4206   |   Fax (785) 628-4152
Kent Steward, Director   |  ksteward@fhsu.edu  |  Kurt Beyers, Assistant Director   |  kbeyers@fhsu.edu