CHADRON – Chadron State College’s Nebraska Business Development Center (NBDC) team, honored its clients, Cody and Chrystal Brooks, owners of White River Feed, L.L.C., of Chadron, with a ceremony at the Rangeland Complex Wednesday. The Brookses received the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Award for 2017 Nebraska State Small Business Person of the Year.
This was the third such event in recognition of the business owners. They attended similar occasions in Lincoln in March and in Washington D.C. during National Small Business Week in late April and early May.
Leon Milobar, Nebraska district director of the SBA, a partner with NBDC, spoke at the event, saying the Brookses have built an outstanding business with staying power because it is based on their hard work, innovative ideas, and dedication to their employees and community.
“I encourage other business owners to follow their example. Start small and dream big. Know your customers, provide them with excellent customer service and always be yourself,” Milobar said.
NBDC head business consultant Dr. Gary Dusek and office assistant Jennifer Wittrock nominated the couple.
Dusek said Cody’s 12 years of work experience at the business was a valuable asset when he and his partner approached the NBDC in 2012 requesting help with a business plan so they could purchase the business. In 2015, Chrystal and Cody returned to the NBDC for additional consulting assistance as they made plans to buy the business from their partner.
“They transferred ownership without a hiccup. That’s unusual and should be commended. They’ve also increased sales and expanded to five employees,” Dusek said.
Another honor the Brookses earned the past year includes the NBDC Award for 2016 Champion of Small Business.
They will now be considered with 54 other Small Business Person of the Year state and territorial winners for the SBA’s 2017 National Small Business Person of the Year.
—Tena L. Cook, Marketing Coordinator