The Waterbury Regional Chamber’s Small Business Council has announced recipients of their prestigious 2014 Harold Webster Smith Awards established to recognize companies which have shown achievement and excellence in small business. The Council also announced that Kathy Bromage, senior vice president of strategy and marketing for The Hartford’s small commercial insurance segment, will be the keynote speaker at the Chamber’s annual awards breakfast Thursday, January 30, 2014 from 7:45 to 9:30 AM at Aria Wedding & Banquet Facility, 45 Murphy Road in Prospect, Connecticut. Recipients of the 17th Annual Harold Webster Smith Awards are TC’s Pawn Company Jewelry & Electronics Exchange in Waterbury for Small Business of the Year; Tavis O. Tindall, Esq., owner of Tindall Law Firm in Waterbury and Hartford for Entrepreneur of the Year; and Concentric Tool and Manufacturing Co., Inc., in Waterbury for Manufacturer of the Year.
Harold Webster Smith founded First Federal Savings of Waterbury in 1935 to help people build, and buy homes. He served as CEO until 1937 and chairman of the board until 1995 when First Federal was renamed Webster Bank in his honor. Today, Webster Bank is the largest financial service organization in New England, and each year, the Chamber honors small business leaders who, like Smith, have the vision to expand, diversify, and prosper. “In honor of Harold Webster Smith’s legacy and small business inspiration,” remarked Lynn Ward, president and CEO of the Waterbury Regional Chamber, “we recognize small companies and entrepreneurs who share his passion for business development and his commitment to positive economic progress of the Waterbury region. Throughout his career, Harold Webster Smith served as an inspiration for countless small businesses. We are very pleased to recognize the many companies that share his ideals.”
The 2014 Harold Webster Smith Small Business of the Year Award recipient, TC’s Pawn Company Jewelry & Electronics Exchange has been in business for 26 years and has 25 employees. Through varying climates during the past decades TC’s has continually thrived and took initiatives to expand their Lakewood Road location. By updating their computing and security systems company owner/partner Jay Sargent and TC’s has been able to work with state and local law enforcement in both reporting and investigations. The partnership that owns TC’s also owns multiple Waterbury-based businesses including DMS Check Express and Bill Payment Center. In 2014 another TC’s location will be added on East Main Street in Waterbury. TC’s has continually worked closely with other Magical Mile businesses and has been involved in many community partnerships including being Platinum Sponsors of Crime Stoppers’ annual fundraising event and creating a solid relationship with the Waterbury Police Activity League. TC’s also participates in the annual Earth Day cleanup; donates 25 turkeys for PAL’s annual Thanksgiving event; hosts the Chamber’s Wolcott Street Lakewood Road Business Association’s Holiday Tree Lighting; provided 200 brand name sneakers to area families at PAL’s 2013 Halloween party, plus 1,000 basketballs to local area needy children. Each year TC’s sponsors Easter Seals, “Rides for Rick”, supports local school projects, and donates to a children’s book drive. When TC’s donates goods and monies, their staff frequently also volunteers their personal time because their staff all considers themselves to be “Team Members.”
Recipient of the 2014 Harold Webster Smith Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Tavis O. Tindall, Esq., is founder and owner of the Tindall Law Firm in Waterbury with a satellite office in Hartford. A civil litigation and personal injury attorney for 15 years, Tindall left his previous partnership to renovate the historic 1908 Victorian-style club house at 64 Holmes Avenue in Waterbury. He began his practice and renovations of the building while maintaining a full docket of cases. With a strong focus on community involvement including Waterbury’s high Hispanic and other ethnic groups, Tindall expresses his desire to provide proper council to the city’s ethnic communities even while being courted to higher net worth clients in Hartford. Tindall serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations including being the vice president of the Home to Home Foundation, Inc. and the Hispanic Coalition of Greater Waterbury. His staff is also involved in local non-profit organizations including local church groups and Concepts for Adoptive Learning. The bilingual staff of Tindall Law Firm includes four female Latino employees who are all involved in civic, non-profit and community activities as well as raising families. Tindall sets an admirable example for his staff of balancing his career ambitions with the importance of family life.
The 2014 Harold Webster Smith Manufacturer of the Year Award recipient, Concentric Tool and Manufacturing Co., Inc. machine shop has been in business for 41 years. In 2012 the company increased sales over 15% and profitability nearly 50%. Company president Klaus Babiarz also increased their workforce by adding five employees and another shift of operation. Concentric almost doubled its profitability by implementing new equipment and ideas and taking advantage of state funding programs which allowed them to increase their staff. Recently the company spent over $300,000 to purchase new machinery and state-of-the-art inspection equipment to improve efficiency and quality, and implemented regularly-scheduled continuous improvement meetings. This January they will begin a new retirement profit-sharing program for employees plus new health care offerings. The company is registered for ISO 9000 and the current plan will be completed by 2014. Locally, Concentric works with schools and colleges by teaching students and hiring future skilled workers. Through the Connecticut Workforce, Concentric also helps train new employees for manufacturing firms and speaks at local schools and companies on opportunities in the manufacturing arena. In addition to contributing to numerous local charities for many years, in 2013 Concentric’s staff donated considerable labor and resources to restore and rebuild the much-acclaimed Holy Land cross in Waterbury.
Premier sponsor of the January 30th breakfast is Webster Bank. Small business supporters of the honorary awards event are Nardelli’s Grinder Shoppes; Naugatuck Valley Community College; Secor, Cassidy & McPartland, P.C.; Traver IDC; Waterbury Hospital; and Winvian.
To reserve a seat for the January 30th Harold Webster Smith Awards Breakfast at the Aria Wedding & Banquet Facility at 45 Murphy Road in Prospect, and to learn more about the Waterbury Regional Chamber, visit www.waterburychamber.com, call 203-757-0701, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.