Tar Heel Basement Systems Awarded 2012 Business of the Year by Boone Chamber of Commerce on Thursday

Published Friday, October 26, 2012 at 11:28 am

By Paul T. Choate

Chamber Chairman Daniel Minton (right) presents the Business of the Year Award to Tar Heel Basement Systems General Manager Will Blake (center) and Pete Burgess. Photo by Paul T. Choate

Oct. 26, 2012. More than 60 people gathered at Bare Essentials Natural Market in Boone on Thursday evening for the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce’s presentation of the 2012 Business of the Year Award to Tar Heel Basement Systems. 

“I am honored and humbled by this award. It’s really not my award, it belongs to all the people at Tar Heel Basement Systems,” said Owner Pete Burgess. 

Prior to the award presentation, Chamber Chairman Daniel Minton said many things are looked at when the Chamber selects the Business of the Year Award recipient, including their staying power, annual growth in number of employees, increases in sales or unit volume, indication of continued growth, innovative products or services, response to adversity, use of local resources and evidence of helping the community. 

“I think our nominee exemplifies many of those characteristics,” Minton said.

Since going into business, the company has expanded their service area east of Raleigh and into Southwest Virginia.

“You have a little homegrown their business that has actually expanded their territory in an economic time that was challenging at the least,” Minton said. 

Bare Essentials Co-owner Ben Henderson and others got a kick out of the makeshift microphone — an upside down phone hooked up to the store’s PA system. Photo by Paul T. Choate

The company was opened in 2003 and has expanded from two employees at that time to 25 currently, including the addition of 11 new hires in the last year. They have also received recognition for taking the “One Job Challenge,” pledging to hire at least one new full-time position for the year. 

Since opening, Tar Heel Basement Systems has increased their sales every year that they have been in business. From sales of $35,000 in 2003, they are now looking to surpass their targeted annual sales total of $2.2 million in 2012, which would be a 58 percent sales increase from last year. 

In addition to economic success, the company also does a great deal to help the High Country community. They have donated services with a retail value around $30,000 to Habitat for Humanity. Additionally, they have made monetary donations to the Boone Service League, Make A Wish Foundation, Blue Star Mothers of the High Country, Watauga Parks and Recreation, High Country Soccer Association, Children’s Cancer Society and the Special Olympics, all within the last year. 

“Not only do they put their services out there, they put their dollars back into our community and the non-profits and other organizations,” Minton said. 

Prior to the presentation, local businesses, such as Carol Coulter’s Heritage Homestead Goat Dairy shown here, set up to offer samples as ceremony attendees mingled. Photo by Paul T. Choate

As a member of the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce, Tar Heel Basement Systems is proud to say that even though they have expanded their service area they hire and retain only local employees and never utilize outside labor. Additionally, they have established a partnership with Appalachian State University’s athletic program and offer internship opportunities to ASU students. 

The company has created a “Pro Partner Program,” a referral system that offers discounts to local realtors, contractors, engineers, home inspectors and other civic organizations. 

Due to such success, the company has recently outgrown their currently facility will be looking to soon move into a larger warehouse/office to continue operations. 

“We’re looking forward to 2013 and continuing to grow and continuing to invest in the High Country,” said General Manager Will Blake. 

For more information about Tar Heel Basement Systems, visit tarheelbasementsystems.com or call 1-888-569-5902.

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