KSU announces winners of the "2011 Georgia Family Business of the Year" awards


Annual prizes given by the Cox Family Enterprise Center at the Coles College of Business KENNESAW,…

Georgia (Jul 5, 2011)Annual prizes given by the Cox Family Enterprise Center at the Coles College of Business

KENNESAW, Ga.  (July 5, 2011) — The Cox Family Enterprise Center, housed at Kennesaw State University’s Coles College of Business, has announced the winners of the 20th annual Georgia Family Business of the Year Awards.

The world renowned Cox Family Enterprise Center has honored the best Georgia-based family businesses since 1991. The center gives out the Cox Century Award to a family firm that has been in business for at least 100 years and selects winners and finalists in categories based on company size. Winners are chosen by a panel of independent judges and are critiqued on a number of criteria, including family involvement in the business, innovative business practices or strategies, contributions to the community, and business success.

“These family businesses are great examples of how family and business mix well for the benefit of our communities,” said Joe Astrachan, executive director of the Cox Family Enterprise Center. “These families have shown how care and concern for employees, customers and the community can insulate us all against the ravages of rampant self-interest and outright greed.”

The 20th annual awards dinner will be held Nov. 29 at the Renaissance Waverly Hotel in Atlanta. The 2011 awards dinner is co-hosted by Georgia Trend and sponsored by J. Smith Lanier & Co.

The winners and finalists of the “2011 Georgia Family Business of the Year Awards” are:

Cox Century Award: The Big Store (Tifton) was founded in 1910 and has served the Tifton community for more than 100 years. Today the Big Store is a retail store with more than 22 employees, five of whom are members of the founding family.

Large Business (250+ employees)

Winner: Kauffman Tire (Ellenwood) started as a Texaco service station in 1936.  The company now has 860 employees, including three family members operating 66 facilities in seven states.


Kids II Inc. (Alpharetta)

Pharma Tech Industries Inc. (Royston)

Medium Business (50 to 250 employees)

Winner: Blanchard and Calhoun (Augusta) was founded in 1919 by George Blanchard and Francis Calhoun as a residential and commercial brokerage, property management and insurance business. Today the company has 252 real estate agents housed in seven office buildings.


Piedmont National Corporation (Atlanta)

See Rock City Inc. (Lookout Mountain)

Small Business (fewer than 50 employees)

Winner: Way Brothers Inc. (Hawkinsville) was founded in 1933 by Samuel and Robert Way as an automobile and truck dealership. Today the dealership has 29 employees, four of whom are members of the founding family.


Baumgarten’s (Atlanta)

Hill Aircraft (Atlanta)


To purchase tickets or tables for the dinner, please call the Cox Family Enterprise Center at 770-423-6045.

About the Cox Family Enterprise Center

Since 1987, the Cox Family Enterprise Center has been dedicated to the education, recognition and research of family businesses. As one of the first university-based centers of its kind, the center remains on the cutting edge of family business education and research and has played a critical role in serving family businesses and furthering economic development.

For more information on the Cox Family Enterprise Center, please visit www.kennesaw.edu/fec



A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu