Photos upon request
Media releases for the individual winners linked below
MONTGOMERY – The Alabama Retail Association this year honored 12 retail businesses with operations in 22 Alabama cities as Retailers of the Year. Together, these businesses employ more than 500 at 32 Alabama locations. Alabama Retail has been presenting the Retailer of the Year Awards since 1999.
2022 ALABAMA RETAILERS OF THE YEAR
A panel of judges chose 10 Alabama Retailer of the Year winners in four categories based on annual sales volume. The category winners have been in business for at least five years. The judges also selected an Emerging Retailer of the Year, who has been in business for less than five years. An online and Facebook contest determined the Customers’ Choice Award.
ANNUAL SALES LESS THAN $1 MILLION
- GOLD AWARD: Chad and Kendra Wester, owners of Boll Weevil Soap Company in Enterprise; nominated by Cassidi Kendrick, former Enterprise Main Street director.
- SILVER AWARD: Tena King, who with her husband, T.C. Morgan, owns King’s Olive Oil Company in Gadsden; nominated by Christi Robinson, president and chief executive officer of The Chamber of Gadsden/Etowah County.
- BRONZE AWARD: Kristal Bryant, owner and pastry chef for K & J’s Elegant Pastries in Birmingham; nominated by Erika Dix, a partner with the Birmingham Business Alliance.
ANNUAL SALES $1 MILLION TO $5 MILLION
- GOLD AWARD: Amy Jason, founder/owner of Cookie Fix in Homewood and Cahaba Heights plus Cookie Fix Franchising, which includes Huntsville; nominated by Meredith Drennen, executive director of the Homewood Chamber of Commerce.
- SILVER AWARD: Bill E. Stitt, owner and head bacon maker of BILL-E’s and BILL-E’s SMALL BATCH BACON in Fairhope; nominated by Casey Williams, president and chief executive officer of the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce.
- BRONZE AWARD: Susan Gordon, founder, chief creator and owner of Susan Gordon Pottery in Homewood; nominated by Erika Dix of The Alliance.
ANNUAL SALES $5 MILLION TO $20 MILLION
- GOLD AWARD: Ashley McMakin, founder and chief executive officer of Ashley Mac’s, which has five Birmingham locations; nominated by Karen Odle, former president, and Michelle Hawkins, current president of the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce.
- SILVER AWARD: Joe and Kelli Richburg, owners of J.R.’s Lawnmower Shop in Opp; nominated by Kelly Brandin, executive administrator of the Opp and Covington County Area Chamber of Commerce.
- BRONZE AWARD: Babbie Styslinger, owner of At Home Furnishings in Homewood; nominated by the Homewood Chamber of Commerce.
ANNUAL SALES MORE THAN $20 MILLION
RETAILER OF THE YEAR
- Brent Barkin, former president and chief executive officer of Shoe Station Inc. and current senior vice president of new business development and integration for Shoe Carnival Inc. The Shoe Station banner of Shoe Carnival has 22 stores, 10 in Alabama; nominated by the Mobile Chamber.
GEE EMERGING RETAILER OF THE YEAR
- Jaclyn Robinson, founder and owner of Mo’Bay Beignet Co. with two locations in Mobile and one each in Auburn, Orange Beach and Tuscaloosa. Its sixth Alabama location opens soon in Saraland; nominated by Danette Richards, director of small business development for the Mobile Chamber.
CUSTOMERS’ CHOICE AWARD
- Rustique Relics in Clanton, owned by Rodney and Melissa “Missy” Baker; nominated by Rachel Martin, executive director, Chilton County Chamber of Commerce. Rustique Relics received 1,669 votes, or 22% of the 7,684 votes cast.
“It is an honor to be able to recognize such an outstanding group of retailers,” said Rick Brown, president of the Alabama Retail Association, who presented each award during in-store ceremonies in September. “Each retailer honored is a credit to their community and the retail industry.”
The Alabama Retail Association represents retailers, the largest private employer in the state of Alabama, before the Alabama Legislature and the U.S. Congress. Through sales of food, clothing, furniture, medicine and more, our 4,300 independent merchant and national company members touch almost every aspect of daily living. Since 1943, we’ve worked to promote what’s best for the retail industry in Alabama. Whether voicing the retail view when public policy is made, educating members about issues that impact them, negotiating rates for benefits and services or communicating the retail story, the Alabama Retail Association and its members are better together.
Nancy King Dennis | 334.551.0643 | 800.239.5423
Originally posted at 11 a.m. Aug. 31, 2022, without award levels. Updated Oct 1 and Oct. 24.