'Mom and Pop' Firms to Be Honored by Baylor Institute

June 10, 1996

by Alan Hunt

WACO, Texas - Members of the public and more than 250 chambers of commerce throughout Texas are being asked to nominate top family firms for the seventh annual Outstanding Family Business Awards competition sponsored by Baylor University's Institute for Family Business.

Each year, the institute honors those family firms which demonstrate strong business and family values. Awards are given in three categories - large firms, with more than 250 employees; medium-sized firms, with 51-250 employees; and small firms, with 50 or fewer employees. Outstanding firms are also honored in the special award categories of Family Values, Community Commitment, Fastest-Growing Family Business, Well-Managed Family Business and the Founders Award, which goes to the family business that has grown and adapted to present and future markets while maintaining the identity and original concepts of the founders.

"In previous years, we have heard from many members of the public," said Dr. Nancy Upton, founder of the Institute for Family Business and director of Baylor's John F. Baugh Center for Entrepreneurship. "Some have told us they have been loyal customers of these businesses for decades and this is their way of saying 'thank you' to the owners."

Last year, more than 100 "mom and pop" businesses were nominated for the contest. To be nominated, a firm must be headquartered in Texas and employ at least two generations in an operating capacity. In addition to independent nominations, family business owners can also nominate their companies for the contest.

Upton said outstanding family firms should demonstrate contributions to their industry and community. "They should be positive role models for both the business community and the family in business." She added, "Family businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy. It has been estimated that 75 percent of all businesses in the United States are family-owned or controlled."

The eight Texas firms honored in last year's competition included PRO-LINE Corporation, Snelling Personnel Services, and Healthtech Rehabilitation Inc., all of Dallas; the

McWhorter*Greenhaw hardware and music store of Mesquite; KARLEE Inc. of Garland; Stacy Furniture of Southlake; the Coppell-based firm of Minyard Food Stores Inc.; and Warren Electric Company of Houston.

Judges for this year's program will include expert family business consultants and advisers and principals of family firms. The awards will be presented Oct. 24 during a ceremony in Austin.

Nomination forms can be obtained from the Institute for Family Business, P.O. Box 98011, Baylor University, Waco, TX 76798-8011. The deadline for nominations is Aug. 1, 1996.

For more information, call Susan Meacham at (817) 755-2265, ext. 5.

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