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2014 Vermilion County Business Hall of Fame

Commercial News-DANVILLE — Nominations of successful business men and woman are being sought as new inductees into the 2014 Vermilion County Business Hall of Fame.
“It has nothing to do with age,” said Linda Bolton, director of business development and government relations with Vermilion Advantage. “It’s really about a successful person and being invested in the community.”

The men and women who have built successful businesses throughout Vermilion County’s history also often work behind the scenes to help the community grow.
It is the men and women who have reached a level of success in business, yet have also given their time, talent and funds to build the county who will be honored next spring as the new inductees into the Vermilion County Business Hall of Fame, according to a press release from Vermilion Advantage.
Nominations are being accepted now for the 2014 honorees who will be inducted during ceremonies at the Vermilion County Museum next March.
The Business Hall of Fame is housed at the museum and accessible to visitors throughout the year. The public is invited to nominate individuals whom they believe have contributed to the economic climate of the county, as well as contributed to their community, regardless of where their business was located in Vermilion County.
“Whether the individual was successful in the agricultural industry, manufacturing, or small business and retail, we want to honor those who have celebrated success not only in their businesses but also in our community,” said Vicki Haugen, Vermilion Advantage president and CEO.
Inductees honored in 2012 included the late C. S. (Sherm) Paxton who founded the Grab It Here grocery empire more than 100 years ago in Georgetown; the late Robert R. (Kish) Bookwalter, a Danville attorney, business entrepreneur and a driver to construct Danville Stadium; Lou and Sybil Mervis, Mervis Industries and Foundation, who have developed and grown countless businesses as well as providing educational opportunities for so many youth in Vermilion County; and James “Big Jim” Darby, founder and owner, with his children, of Greenwood, Inc., which includes Sunset Funeral Home and Memorial Park, Trigard, and Trigard Memorials.
Last March, the new 2013 inductees included the late developer Art Fleming who drove much of the housing and commercial development in the county for many years; Lowell H. Loving, a surveyor and mapper often lauded for his knowledge of the community’s history and a mentor to countless young people; and Charles Henry Clapp, Jr., a local entrepreneur considered to be one of the country’s foremost experts on aerosol packaging technology and formulations, and who with his family established Full-Fill Industries in Henning, now considered the largest food aerosol manufacturer in the country.
Nominations will be accepted until Dec. 2. Forms are available at Neuhoff Media, 1501 N. Washington St. and on the site; at Vermilion Advantage, 28 W. North St. and online at, and at the Commercial-News, 17 W. North St and its website

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