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‘Go-to-guy’ receives Chamber award

By Carol McIntire

Richard Sheets award
AWARD RECIPIENT. Amy Rutledge, Chamber of Commerce, presents the award for the Outstanding Business Person to Richard Sheets as Congressman Bill Johnson looks on at left.

The recipient of the 2013 Carroll County Chamber of Commerce’s Outstanding Business Person was described as “the go-to-guy” for nearly every one of the 60 people who attended to watch their friend, family member and colleague be recognized.

When Rev. Gordon Warner introduced the recipient, Richard Sheets, he received a standing ovation from nearly 140 people in attendance.

“Each of the 60 people here to watch Richard receive this award can remember late at night, on weekends, after church and sometimes during church when he has changed  his plans to help some one in distress,” said Warner, who is the pastor of the church Sheets attends.

“A man is truly blessed who has the abilities to help others and has the character to act on those abilities,” he added.

Warner said Sheets was raised in Adover, OH, and, at the age of 21, was named the village administrator. At the age of 25, he interviewed for the position of Water and Sewer Superintendent with the village of Carrollton and, as Sheets himself says, “passed the interview.”

In 2004 he retired from that position and hasn’t slowed down since. He is a small businessman who owns several rental units, is in partnership in an excavating business with Paul Moody, works with Mohawk Utilities and helps out a number of local contractors.

Sheets was presented a plaque by Amy Rutledge, director of the Chamber of Commerce.

Five businesses owners were recognized as recipients of the Chamber’s Golden Shovel Award for establishing or expanding a business within the county.

Recipients included:
George Bach, owner of East Ohio Properties, for establishing the Quick Lube on Canton Rd. and for renovations to his Canton Rd., car wash. He also built a strip mall on Canton Rd. and purchased the plaza where Consumers Bank is located. Chamber President Debbie Haugh, who presented the awards, noted Bach used local contractors as much as possible for his projects.

Dr. Bill Grubbs for establishing the Neck and Back Pain Relief Center in the plaza across from McDonald’s. Haugh noted the 1,800 square foot center represents and investment of approximately $40,000 and created two new local jobs.

Praxair for establishing a Carrollton location on Canton Rd. The 3,000 square foot business created two new local jobs. Haugh noted Praxair is a global distributor of welding gases, industrial gases, welding equipment and welding supplies with annual gross sales of over $15 billion. She said they are tailoring their Carrollton location to meet the needs of the oil and gas industry.

Ace Hardware for a 3,000 square foot addition that created 1,000 feet of new retail space at the Canton Rd. business. One new job was created. New product lines have been added to the business, which has been a part of the community for 22 years. Kim Mills accepted the award.

Long’s Lock-Up for adding two new storage units to its Canton Rd., Carrollton, location as well as a 2,400 square foot building that serves as storage and is transformed into the home of the Coley’s Reunion once a year.  Jim Long, who accepted the award, and his wife, Marsha, built their first storage unit on the property in 1990. Haugh noted the rental rates for the units remain the same as they were in 1990.

Rutledge presented Pam Grim, longtime Chamber secretary with flowers. Grim is leaving her position to become a full time clerk for the newly-created Economic Development/Regional Planning department.

Congressman Bill Johnson, Republican, Marietta, spoke about “the great things that are happening in Carroll County.”

He said he would like to see America rally around the idea of energy independence much they way they did around President John F. Kennedy’s goal in the 1960s to put a man on the moon within 10 years. “We did it in eight years,” he said.

“He launched us on a journey and Americans bought into it. Millions of jobs were created. We saw a period of innovation American had never seen before and has not seen since. We solved problems, found solutions and persevered through hard times. We will do that again.”

He suggested Americans should set a goal of energy independence within the next 10 years to become energy independent and no longer depend on someone else to provide for our energy needs.

He said industry regulators should become “partners in progress” and help find solutions, not simply say “no” without a sound reason.

“We would see millions of jobs created and young people involved in energy jobs,” he said. “It’s already happening all over Ohio, but no where like it is in Carroll County. Ohio does it right and in a responsible way. My job is to keep federal regulators from coming in and messing it up. This opportunity is bigger than what exists in the Backen Shale and our children are going to have opportunities.  What I’m saying is: hold onto your hat ’cause this is going to be an exciting time.”

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