by Joyce Marcel, Vermont Business Magazine At only 26 years of age, Waste Free Earth's Marina McCoy has seen enough highs and lows to last a lifetime. Vermont's Young Entrepreneur of the Year, McCoy was raised in Vermont. She graduated Cum Laude from Sierra Nevada College in May 2016 with a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies in Sustainability and a BSBA in Ski Business and Resort Management.
by Joyce Marcel, Vermont Business Magazine Even on the phone, Burlington's Sarah Degray, 36, sounds like she's bursting with energy. A fan of indoor cycling — also called spinning — since 2005, she turned her passion into a $1 million business. Things were going great — REV is the Small Business Administration's Vermont Woman-Owned Company of the Year— until COVID-19 took most of her growth away. Now she's struggling to keep her business open.
by Joyce Marcel, Vermont Business Magazine Northshire Living, which designs and installs upscale custom kitchens and bathrooms, is the Small Business Administration's Vermont Veteran-Owned Business of the Year. On its website (northshireliving.com), Northshire describes itself as “a complete kitchen, bath, and interior design showroom located in Manchester, Vermont. We offer complete white glove installation services, general contracting, and project management in addition to our award winning design services. We are also happy to work with your contractor and supply high quality materials and detailed installation plans.
by Joyce Marcel, Vermont Business Magazine The Britton Lumber Company in Fairlee is the winner of the SBA Vermont Family-Owned Business Award. But it is really the story of two families, sequentially owning and running the same business. That’s because the Moses family purchased the lumber mill from the Britton family in 2013, after the Britton family had been running it since 1946.
by VBM Staff The Vermont Small Business Administration is presenting two additional awards this year. The 2020 New England Excellence and Innovation Center Award is being given to the Vermont Small Business Development Center, led by State Director Linda Rossi. The Vermont SBA is also presenting the Vermont Award of Distinction to Chris Carrigan, Vice President of Business Development, at the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.
by Joyce Marcel, Vermont Business Magazine Rise to the Top in South Burlington won the Small Business Administration's Vermont Minority-Owned Business of the Year. The company, founded and run by Jason Gordon, 37, provides coaching and mentoring for young student athletes. Gordon's wife, Kourtny, is vice president. Rise to the Top does not contract with schools or institutions. Individual parents who hear of Gordon's work through word-of-mouth or Facebook register their kids for the programs.
Vermont Business Magazine This year, the annual campaign is centered around the essential role that farmers markets play in providing healthy local food access to everyone in our state during the coronavirus pandemic. Farmers Markets build prosperity among Vermont’s farmers and small businesses and help create healthy communities. Farmers market organizations are local food heroes! In the midst of a global pandemic, farmers markets — like all other small businesses — have been scrambling to continue operations for the farmers and communities that depend on them. Market managers across Vermont were able to quickly shift operations to ensure customer and vendor safety while continuing to serve the community. Always a hub for innovation, this season has highlighted the adaptability of farmers markets while emphasizing the need for investment in local food systems.
Tricia Coates, Interim Executive Director, LUND For Claire, the pandemic has been harsh on her and her young children. Between juggling care for her children as a single mom already living in poverty before the pandemic, worrying about paying her bills because of reduced hours at work, and isolation from her support network, she sought relief in the drugs she hadn’t touched in three years.
Will Claire sink back into her addiction? Will she lose her job because of it? Will she lose her children? Will she lose her life?
Vermont Business Magazine Right now, we all need a place to get away and unplug. Open space to run free, homelands to ground us, water views to rejuvenate our spirits. Filled with places to explore, learn, and unwind, Retreat Farm’s expansive property in Brattleboro is open and free to everyone. In addition to animals grazing on pasture and growing food to share with the community, the Farm has added a new labyrinth garden, arts installations, walking paths and trails, and interpretive signs about the history and nature of the property. Works by local artists Bob Boemig and Steve Proctor are yours to savor, with a sculpture by Miles Chapin and a tribute to Wolf Kahn and Emily Mason coming soon.
by Amanda Kuhnert “This has been an incredibly trying time to be a small business owner,” said Nora DeMuth, owner of the Flower Basket in Hardwick. “I can’t remember ever needing to think through major decisions so many times and within such a short period of time like I’ve needed to do over the past few months.” The Flower Basket is known for its bright and cheerful floral arrangements made with locally grown flowers. But in order to stay open as an essential business during the Covid-19 crisis, this spring Nora quickly pivoted to offering more gardening-related supplies, such as seeds and vegetable plants.
Vermont Business Magazine The Okemo Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce recently gathered for their 63rd Annual Meeting held at the Echo Lake Inn located just north of Ludlow along the Scenic Route 100 Byway in the Tyson Village of Plymouth. Innkeeper Tom Gianola was thanked for hosting & sponsoring the event. Gail Beardmore of Engel & Volkers in Ludlow was elected the incoming President of the Board. Former President Tom Gianola will remain on the executive committee serving as treasurer.
More Efficient Organization Will Better Serve Region, Businesses
Vermont Business Magazine Two of Rutland County’s key community and economic development organizations have decided to merge. The boards of Rutland Economic Development Corporation and Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce voted unanimously Thursday to create a merged, streamlined organization to better serve their members and the greater Rutland region.