Chamber Names David Daniels Small Business Person of the Year

CARROLLTON, GA – Small Business Person of the Year was awarded to David Daniels, owner/operator of Chick-fil-A in Carrollton, during the annual Carroll County Chamber of Commerce Membership BBQ.
“When you combine great food, great service, and great community involvement, business success comes your way and that is true of David Daniels,” said Daniel Jackson, President and CEO of the Carroll County Chamber. “David’s philosophy of putting community and people first has served him well during his 16-year tenure at Carrollton’s Chick-fil-A.”
Daniels’ business success is evidenced by a 400 percent sales increase since 1997, double the number of both full time and part time staff, and winner of several Chick-fil-A awards such as the Symbol of Success and Number One Sales Increase Store in the chain.
“I try to serve all of our community with honor, dignity and respect,” Daniels said.  “I have always understood that apart from our community, we would all be jobless.  We work hard to stay connected to the community through various events such as Spirit Nights and service on school committees.”
Daniels has awarded more than $85,000 in college scholarships to his team members and has one of the lowest turnover rates in the industry.  Many of his staff have gone on to own their own Chick-fil-A locations or continued at the Atlanta corporate office. 
“Our focus is really on developing the team member as a total person, not just an employee. This has helped to attract better talent as well as gain better results,” he said. He currently has 27 team members who have 5 or more years with Chick-fil-A experience.
Also during Daniels’ tenure, the restaurant has undergone two full-scale remodels increasing seating capacity with more than 75 additional seats and updated play space.
Daniels executes leadership from a different approach from the traditional general manager/ assistant manager system. 
“I use a high performance leadership team where the concept focuses on having leadership oversee a specific area of the business such as marketing, culinary, hospitality, drive thru, administration, etc.” he said. “This allows the business to run itself more efficiently, having qualified leaders lead in their area of passion and gifting.”
The Small Business Person of the Year award is presented annually by the Chamber’s Business Development Committee.
Also Tuesday, the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce presented awards to businesses that have made improvements to their properties during the annual Membership BBQ held recently at the Burson Center.
The Silver Award is divided into three areas – public, private and special – and Carrollton’s Main Street received the Public Award for The Amp and The Depot on Bradley. The Amp, completed in 2012, seats 800-1,000 people and features a May-September free summer concert and movie series. Artists have included Diamond Rio, Bill Gentry, Atlanta Rhythm Section, and many talented local performers.
The Depot on Bradley opened to the public in January 2013 after extensive renovation to the 1880s brick structure now containing the Ticketing Booth and the Grand Hall.  The Ticketing Booth area is slated to house both Carrollton and railroad memorabilia while the Gran Hall is available for event rentals.
The Private Award went to Mill Town Music Hall in Bremen.  It opened in 2012 as a prime example of suburban re-use of a “big box,” space that was formerly a Walmart. The concert and entertainment venue presented multiple music genres including performances by Toby Keith, Alabama, Amy Grant, Mel Tillis, Steven Curtis Chapman, Travis Tritt, the Oak Ridge Boys and many more.
The City of Mount Zion Playground received the Special Award for the transformation of an overgrown piece of land into a landscaped property and playground.  Opened in August 2013, the playground is located in downtown Mt. Zion and was made possible through grants from the Community Foundation of West Georgia and the Georgia Municipal Association.
The Silver Awards for Beautification are presented annual by the Chamber’s Environmental Projects Committee.
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