Leading EDGE Awards Recognize Family-Owned Businesses and Launches the EDGEccelerator Business Competition

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Phone 315-338-0393

For immediate release:
Thursday, May 30, 2013

Leading EDGE Awards Recognize Family-Owned Businesses
and Launches the EDGEccelerator Business Competition

Four Mohawk Valley companies that are on the Leading EDGE of innovation, growth and sustainability were honored today during the 12th annual Leading EDGE Awards.
During his opening remarks, Steven DiMeo, President of Mohawk Valley EDGE said, “Today we celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit that flourishes in the Mohawk Valley. From our honorees to the Young Entrepeneur Acadamy students and the start-up business applicants to our EDGEucation Series and EDGEccelerator Business Competition, we know that a key part of building and nurturing a local economy is creating opportunities for building from within.”

This year’s honorees are all family owned businesses in the Mohawk Valley and include:

  • Burrows Paper Corporation for their steady growth and ongoing capital improvement projects. Established in 1919, Burrows Paper is a family-owned company manufacturing light weight specialty papers. Headquartered in Little Falls, they serve a global market manufacturing a variety of products used in various applications including medical and food packaging and many industrial grade papers.
  • Matt Brewing Company for their commitment to Utica and their recent green-energy project which included the installation of an anaerobic digester which creates clean energy and reduces waste. The expansion also includes creation of additional green park space to accommodate more guests of the brewery.
  • Meyda Lighting for their recent expansion and unique position of leadership in the lighting industry. This family owned business began approximately 40 years ago and stands as America’s leading and oldest manufacturer of custom and decorative lighting and stained glass.
  • Rome Strip Steel for their recent capital improvement projects and dedication to the city of Rome. Rome Strip Steel Company, Inc. is a family owned business, specializing in the production of custom precision-manufactured cold rolled strip steel. Since 1926, three generations of the Hinman family, along with their dedicated employees, have worked out of their facility on Henry Street in Rome.

Symeon Tsoupelis, owner of Symeon’s Greek Restaurant of Yorkville, is this year’s recipient of the Christopher Destito Leading EDGE Award. Symeon is the second generation owner of the restaurant started by his parents in 1973. This year Symeon served as the telethon chairman for the Oneida County Historical Society and continues to serve as co-chairman of the annual Stomp Out Cancer Telethon. He is also a board member of the Faxton St. Luke’s Healthcare Foundation, the United Way, St. Elizabeth Medical Center and the Masonic Medical Research Advisory Board.

John Zogby, Senior Analyst for JZ Analytics, delivered the keynote address at this year’s event. Drawing from research for his new book, “The First Globals,” he shared insights from youth ages 18-33 and talked about the importance and impact of attracting and retain First Globals in our region.

Eight local high school students who participated in the first Young Entrepreneur Academy (YEA!) program at MVCC were recognized with Call Mohawk Valley Home certificates. “We hope your businesses grow and prosper in the Mohawk Valley. It would be great to present your company with a Leading EDGE Award one day,” said Laura Casamento, EDGE Board Chair during the luncheon.

The EDGEccelerator Business Competition is for manufacturing, industrial, wholesale, technical, and scientific companies that have a project and a strong business plan. It is open to companies located in Oneida or Herkimer County with fewer than 50 employees. Entries are available on the EDGE website, www.mvedge.org and must be submitted by Thursday, August 1, 2013. The winner of the competition will receive a cash award of $20,000 and based on the project proposal will receive a loan up to $50,000.

“The EDGEccelerator Business Competition allows EDGE to do more of what it does best- help small, local companies. The best part is that every entry will be reviewed by the EDGE Loan Committee and, regardless of the competition results, may qualify for an EDGE loan,” said Mary Rizzo-Bonney, VP of Communications for Mohawk Valley EDGE.

Sponsors of the EDGEccelerator Business Competition are: NBT Bank, MVATC, D’Arcangelo & Co., NYBDC, NY Small Business Development Center at SUNYIT, MORECO and Utica Industrial Development Corp. (UIDC).

Sponsors of the Leading EDGE Awards include: National Grid, O’Brien & Gere, Shumaker Engineering, Working Solutions, Adirondack Bank, Adjusters International, Basloe, Levin and Cuccaro, Berkshire Bank, Cathedral Corp., Carbone Auto Group, M&T Bank, March Associates, NBT Bank, Oneida Savings Bank and Oneida Indian Nation.

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Contact: Mary Rizzo-Bonney, 315-338-0393

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