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The city of Hickory recently handed out its 2019 business awards.

HICKORY — The city of Hickory’s “Business. Well Crafted.” award winners were recognized during the Dec. 17 Hickory City Council meeting.

Presented by the city’s Business Development Committee, the Business. Well Crafted. awards honor businesses, organizations and entrepreneurs that support and affirm the city of Hickory’s vision for economic vitality.

The following are the 2019 Business. Well Crafted. awards winners:

Individual (Entrepreneur of the Year)

Katye Fredieu is the founder of Artisan Soapery, which manufactures healthier alternatives for bath products and skin care. All products are handmade in the lab behind the brick-and-mortar store in downtown Hickory. Artisan Soapery wholesales products to 53 stores across the country. Fredieu is a devoted board member of the Hickory Downtown Development Association, where she serves on numerous committees, and is committed to the growth and vibrancy of downtown Hickory.

Youth (Entrepreneur younger than 25)

Malachi Morris started Taproot Coffee in 2017. The business is an independent coffee roastery that also operates two “coffee buses” at various locations and events throughout the area. Morris sells his freshly-roasted coffee to numerous clients and offers a subscription service.

Business and/or Organization (10 or fewer employees)

Splentique is an online and customer-facing retailer with a boutique on Union Square specializing in hand-selected clothing that is quality yet affordable. The business has expanded several times since opening its first location in the rear of the Harris Arcade downtown. Splentique’s owner, Regina Stiltner, serves on the Hickory Downtown Development Association Board and is chair of the association’s promotions committee.

StrongLead LLC helps local businesses find new levels of success by developing the strongest leaders, the healthiest culture and the highest-performing teams possible. StrongLead is driven by a mission to make the workplace successful in every way possible by helping companies experience financial success, as well as be a positive force for good in the lives of their employees, customers, and community. The company also serves the larger community through the Catawba Valley Leadership Foundation, a nonprofit providing leadership training and education to local nonprofit, civic and community organizations and emerging leaders.

Business and/or Organization (11 to 50 employees)

Market on Main seeks to bring the highest-quality foods, ingredients, enthusiasm, and imagination, all while focusing on education, passion and service. For more than a decade, Market on Main has served as a banquet and event destination for Hickory and the surrounding community. Its unique, downtown venues can host events for 10 to 600 guests. Market on Main supports the community and regularly gives deep discounts to local charitable organizations.

Business and/or Organization (51 or more employees)

Catawba Valley Community College’s Workforce Solutions Complex is a revolutionary, 80,400-square-foot facility with state-of-the-art classrooms, laboratory spaces and shop areas to teach advanced manufacturing skills and other technical skills in demand by a growing local and state economy.

The Workforce Solutions Complex plays an integral role in preparing the local workforce for the jobs of the present and future with programs in automotive systems technology, computer engineering technology, computer-integrated machining, electrical engineering technology, HVAC systems, industrial systems technology, mechanical engineering technology, mechatronics, robotics and welding.

HSM is a privately owned company with headquarters in downtown Hickory and more than 2,700 employees at facilities spread throughout Hickory, Catawba County and 14 U.S. states. Now celebrating its 75th anniversary, HSM specializes in the manufacture of components for the furniture, bedding, transportation, packaging and health-care industries, and the design and construction of automated production machinery for the bedding, apparel, aerospace and other industries. The company recently completed an expansion of its foam-manufacturing operation in Hickory.

“The Business Development Committee is proud to honor these seven businesses and individuals for their commitment and support of the city’s vision for economic development,” said Joan Long, chair of the BDC.

For more information about the Business Development Committee and its Business. Well Crafted. awards, call Hickory Business Services Manager Dave Leonetti at 828-261-2227 or via email at dle onetti@hickorync.gov.

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