More than 170 people celebrated with the winners of the Delaware Business Times’ Family Owned Business Awards at the Christiana Hilton on June 24.
Seventeen family firms were finalists for the awards. The companies had a combined 914 years in business, and up to five generations of family members participating in the businesses. Only 30 percent of family-owned businesses make it to the second generation, said Rob Martinelli, CEO/president of Today Media, the parent company of the Delaware Business Times.
The oldest business nominated was Bridgewater Jewelers, founded in 1883.
Seven of the businesses are based in Wilmington, one each in Laurel and Seaford, two in Newport, three in New Castle and three in Newark.
The finalists: Assurance Media of Wilmington, Boulden Brothers of Newark, Bridgewater Jewelers of New Castle, Dukes Lumber Co. of Laurel, Fusco Management of New Castle, Giorgi Kitchens & Designs of Wilmington, Harvey, Hanna & Associates of Newport, Joseph Frederick & Sons of Wilmington, Lyons Companies of Wilmington, Mercantile Press of Wilmington, Nixon Uniform Service of New Castle, Pettinaro Companies of Newport, Polymer Technologies of Newark, Sussex Printing of Seaford, Tri-State Battery of Newark, Union Park Automotive Group of Wilmington and Waste Masters Solutions of New Castle.
This year’s judges were Rob Martinelli; Charlie Tomlinson, vice president of business development at Today Media; Allan Ash, associate publisher of the Delaware Business Times; Sam Waltz, the paper’s founding publisher; Margo Reign, business loan advisor for the Delaware Small Business Development Center, and Lisa Sable, mid-Atlantic region executive for Vistage International.
Small-size business: Fusco Management
Medium-size business: Joseph Frederick & Sons, Sussex Printing/The Guide
Large-size business: Pettinaro Companies
The Community Service Award is given to the business that shows excellence in its level of community service: Harvey, Hanna & Associates
The Customer Service Award is given to that business which shows excellence in customer service: Bridgewater Jewelers
The Innovation and Technology Award is given to the business doing something different or modernizing operations to better serve its customers and clients: Polymer Technologies
The Emerging Family Business Award is given to the business that shows remarkable growth or market share: Assurance Media.
The Legacy Business Award is presented to a multi-generational company continuing to involve all family members actively in its daily operations and having an overall impact on Delaware and the business community: Union Park Automotive Group