Second Generation Emporia Sign Company Wins Business of the Year Award

Emporia, Kan. (WIBW) – A second-generation sign company in Emporia will be named a 2022 Business of the Year at the 125th Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Conference.

Coffelt Sign Co., Inc. will be named a 2022 Company of the Year at the 125th Annual Meeting, the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau said.

The Chamber noted that Coffelt Sign Co., Inc. was founded in 1949 by Nelson Coffelt’s cousin, Laurence Coffelt. The original store was located one block south of its current location. Not long after it opened, Nelson came to work with his cousin as a partner.

In 1961, the Chamber of Commerce said Coffelt and his wife Donna bought the business from Laurence and became sole owners. Of three sons and one daughter, Staci is the only one who has chosen to remain with the company.

The chamber said Stacy and her husband Rick had been owners of the company since Nelson’s death in 2005. This makes it a second generation business. Their second son Jesse works with them and is the third generation owner. Nine other grandchildren also mean there is hope for a fourth-generation owner.

Officials noted that Nelson’s motto is “attention to detail,” and that’s how he does business. He would say, “Customers depend on you to deliver a professional product and you can’t cut corners.” This philosophy is still at the pinnacle today.

Each year, the Chamber says, all members are asked to submit nominations for Business of the Year. Nominated businesses are then asked to provide a brief history of their company’s development, their business philosophy and reasons for their success, as well as a list of the various organizations in which they are active.

For the past three years, officials said, honorees vet nominees and decide on winners.

Formal recognition will take place on Friday, January 1 at the Chamber’s 125th Annual Meeting. 20. Chamber Volunteer of the Year, Community Impact and Lifetime Achievement Awards will also be presented.

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