The Saint John Board of Trade has announced the recipients of its 2011 Outstanding Business Achievement Awards. At its 27th awards dinner, Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. was honoured with the award for Emerging Enterprise, and PUNCH Productions accepted the Entrepreneurial Achievement Award. In the Business Excellence category, the award went to Bayview Trucks & Equipment Ltd.
In the Emerging Enterprise category, Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. took top honours. Kara Hachey started her company from the ground up, founding Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. after winning the NB Innovation Foundation Student Entrepreneur Prize through a class project at UNB in 2006. The first division of the company, Go-Go Gymnastics, located in Fredericton, was an instantaneous success, with over 2,500 children in its first 24 months of operation. With increasing demand, Go-Go Gymnastics opened a second location in Saint John and Quispamsis in 2009, and a third location in Moncton in 2010. Servicing approximately 5,000 kids per year, Go-Go Gymnastics has had tremendous success by focusing on getting children active by making fitness fun.
After constant requests to expand into full-time child care, Kara founded Go-Go Gymrichment, a division of Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. in 2010. Go-Go Gymrichment is an elite after-school care initiative that focuses on teaching five main principles: literacy, leadership, entrepreneurship, arts and culture, and physical activity. The after-school program currently has 87 children enrolled full time and operates out of four elementary schools in Fredericton. Go-Go Gymrichment is expanding in the Saint John area in January 2012 as it undertakes an affiliation with four new local schools: Fairvale Elementary, Rothesay Elementary, Forest Hills School and Island View Elementary. With a goal to teach in an active and engaging way, the Go-Go Gymrichment after-school program focuses heavily on creating 21st-century leaders.
Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. has grown into a multi-functional endeavor, employing over 70 young leaders in New Brunswick. By affecting the budding generations of children within the province, Go-Go Gymnastics Inc. hopes that by getting children active and learning in a meaningful way, they can offer something unique to the various regions of New Brunswick.
PUNCH Productions was founded in 2000 by Judith Mackin, its sole proprietor and only full-time employee. Originally named Punch ‘n Judy, it has grown into a multifaceted company specializing in marketing, branding, public relations, design and event planning. Using PUNCH Productions as a platform for various other business ventures, the company expanded from organizing events and conferences to a variety of media and marketing projects.
Always beginning with the assumption that opportunity is everywhere, Judith has become a fearless serial entrepreneur. She has a number of ‘firsts’ to her credit including establishing the first artist-run galleries in the city, culminating in The Originals, a celebration of Saint John artists; co-founding happinez wine bar and the alternative newspaper here; and hosting a National CBC radio 10-week documentary from Saint John. In addition she writes a newspaper column and most recently branched into a sister company, Punchinside, an interior design firm focusing on makeovers of residential and commercial spaces around Saint John and the province, using industrial design and original art. Her newest venture, with her husband Robert Moore and Acre Architects, Into The Wild, will be the first home in Saint John to feature a ‘green’ roof and will house a design and decor studio (TUCK STUDIO). Punchinside’s design work has already been featured on HGTV and in several design magazines.
Judith has always maintained a close and friendly relationship with the media whether with press releases, newspaper columns, blog posts or interviews, and believes her new website is her best marketing tool. She firmly believes in collaborating with talented locals and promotes the people and companies she works with, as well as the City of Saint John itself. Over the last decade, PUNCH has been a constant presence in the community and has always tried to incorporate all things local into its many and varied projects.
Mike Nagle Junior became President of Bayview Trucks & Equipment in 1994, a company established in Saint John by his father in 1972. Under Mike Jr’s leadership, Bayview has added five additional locations - a full service dealership in Fredericton, truck parts stores in St. Stephen and Sussex, and Kubota Tractor dealerships in Fredericton and Woodstock. In 2007, after signing a dealer agreement with Kenworth Truck Company, Mike cancelled their franchise with International Trucks which had allowed them only limited sales territories. In 2008 Bayview opened a full-service Kenworth Truck dealership in Moncton. Bayview now has exclusive distribution and sales rights for Kenworth products throughout Atlantic Canada and is currently working with them on opportunities in other parts of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Bayview has also become the Atlantic Canadian dealer for Doosan Lift Trucks.
Bayview supports its 113 employees, 55 of whom work in Saint John, with paid training both in-house and off-site, while maintaining wage structures even when times were tough. This has helped keep morale high and the employees, some of whom have been with Bayview for more than 30 years, dedicated to the success of the company. Head office is in Saint John, with branch locations linked to the Saint John-based computer system. Bayview’s Saint John location was the first to be certified by Transport Canada to inspect and certify liquid petroleum tankers for highway use, plus the Saint John body shop is one of only two heavy truck shops in the province able to certify severely damaged vehicles as roadworthy after being repaired.
Working with such highly-respected manufacturers as Kenworth, Kubota and Doosan, leaders in their fields for quality and innovation, has enabled Bayview to expand locations and product lines. Bayview has been recognized with awards from manufacturers for superior market share plus two Dealer Excellence awards from Kenworth Truck Company.
This year’s recipient of the “Young Entrepreneur” award is Keith Brideau, Historica. This award recognizes young business leaders (30 years and under) just beginning to make their mark.
The Board of Trade presented this evening for the ninth year “The Big Heart” Award. The recipient of this award is Hestia House.
Also this evening, Board of Trade Chair, John Warrington presented Enterprise Saint John with the Chair’s Award. This marks the eighteenth year in which a deserving individual or organization has been selected by the Board’s Chairperson for their achievements within, and contributions to, the community.
For more information, please contact:
John Warrington, Chairman Ph: 632-2446
Imelda Gilman, President Ph: 634-4157