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Parkway Plastics Honored Among Finalists at New Jersey Family Business of the Year Awards Event

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NJ Family Business of the Year Award Honoree Spotlight via Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship

"Parkway Plastics, a 3rd generation company, was founded in 1951 by Edward W. Rowan Sr. when he saw the opportunity of using plastic to create containers. He was an early adapter and innovator of injection molding technology. His son, Edward Rowan Jr., joined the company bringing financial and organizational processes to make the company financially sound. He took over the company in the 70’s and was followed by his children, Ned Rowan and Kirstin Kelly, around 2009. 

This change in leadership saw the implementation of a strict inventory control system, competitive quoting procedures and a tremendous capital investment to replace machinery and equipment. The company is always looking for ways to grow their business through new products, equipment or acquisitions. 

Ned and Kirstin have learned over the years that leadership and sound financial practices and controls are key factors for a successful family business. The Rowans certainly give back. In honor of their mother, Mary Rowan, the company participates in the annual Cancer Walk and continues to contribute to the American Cancer Society, National SBA, Piscataway PBA Local and the Domestic Violence Crisis Center. 

"Parkway Plastics is an integral part of their community and we are proud to honor them at our NJ Family Business of the Year Awards on October 24, 2018 at the Crystal Plaza." 


New Jersey Manufacturer Receives Award Recognition for Their Family Business (Press Release by Linda Thell)

Parkway Plastics, a third generation family business who manufactures jars and caps with BPA-free plastic, received a prestigious award on Wednesday, Oct 24, 2018 - as they were recognized by Fairleigh Dickinson University's Rothman Institute as a finalist at the New Jersey Family Business of the Year awards ceremony. The ceremony took place at the reputable Crystal Plaza in Livingston.

“We are very honored to receive such a respected award and a congratulate from the governor, Phil Murphy. My grandfather started this business in 1953 and it is a privilege to build on to his legacy,” says Kirstin Kelly of Parkway Plastics. Now in the hands of brother and sister, Ned Rowan and Kirstin Kelly, they have established a company culture that emphasize excellence in the workplace, whether it’s quality control or customer service. Parkway Plastics stresses the importance of their team and they express it in their slogan, “We’re not just your vendor, we’re your team.”

About the Award: The New Jersey Family Business of the Year Awards recognize contributions to the economy and community made by New Jersey family businesses whose innovative strategies and business practices have had a positive impact on the economy and on our society. 

About Parkway Plastics: Parkway Plastics, Inc. is a USA based manufacturer of BPA-free plastic jars, lids & liners. These injection molded plastic containers can be found in a wide variety of industries including, but not limited to, cosmetics, food, medical, dental, laboratories, industrial and arts and crafts industries. In addition to molded inventory, Parkway Plastics hold stock of over 150 different colorants to easily and quickly mold products in variations. Parkway also offers design and decoration which includes spray frosting, printing, hot stamping, labeling, and secondary folding cartons.


Winners Announced: NJ Family Business of the Year Awards Luncheon


While family-owned businesses are perhaps stereotypically thought of as smaller firms, some 35 percent of them are actually Fortune 500 companies, and all family businesses combined account for approximately 50 percent of the United States’ GDP. It was Sally Glick, principal and chief growth strategist at the accounting firm Sobel & Co., who regaled the audience with these and other statistics at yesterday’s 26th Annual New Jersey Family Business of the Year Awards Luncheon, held at the Crystal Plaza in Livingston, and sponsored by: the Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Fairleigh Dickinson University, PNC Bank, Sobel & Co., the New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA), Coughlin Duffy, Crystal Plaza and NEW JERSEY BUSINESS magazine.

Glick added, “With all of their succession, managerial, operational, leadership challenges, [family businesses] are – nonetheless – the single biggest job creators, not just locally, but nationally. The family business is responsible for 60 percent of the nation’s employment, and 70 percent of all new jobs created, overall.”

Keynote Speaker Dax Strohmeyer, president of Triangle Manufacturing, presented the notions that family businesses should devise and document plans, collaborate on them, establish goals and responsibilities, understand who in the business will have decision-making powers, and “divvy up the finances.”

While Strohmeyer extolled the virtues of family businesses, he added, “… family businesses can be tough; they can be really tough …Your No. 1 priority is the preservation of your family: Making sure that your family stays whole, no matter what, because I don’t think anyone gets into a family business thinking to themselves, ‘Well, 10 years from now, I probably won’t be talking to my brother or my father.’ But, I see a lot of family businesses [where] the stress can be very divisive. If you’re planning, make sure that your family is first and foremost, and then a very close second [is] the success of the business …”

Alan Sobel, managing member at Sobel & Co., said, “Family businesses have fulfilled the dreams and aspirations of your family, paid for college education, vacation homes, lifestyles, secured your retirements, helped you achieve your charitable giving goals, and, yes, provided the next generation with a head start on their adult lives … the family business is indeed the gift that keeps on giving.”

Sobel & Co.’s Glick said that throughout the 26-year history of the New Jersey Family Business of the Year Awards program, it has nominated and recognized 1,071 companies, honored 250 semi-finalists, 130 finalists and 54 category winners, and generated event proceeds that are applied toward entrepreneurial scholarships at Fairleigh Dickinson University ($150,000 has been raised toward the scholarship fund).

“The Rothman Institute has really been the leading center in helping family businesses solve challenging issues for more than 26 years,” explained Dale Caldwell, Ed.D., executive director of the Rothman Institute at Fairleigh Dickinson University. “Our mission is to promote, support and research entrepreneurship, with a special focus on family businesses and veterans.”

The award-winning family businesses of the year, announced “live” yesterday, are listed below:

Sales Up to $10M

WINNER – Barth’s Market

Finalist: Parkway Plastics

Finalist: Seniors in Place

Semi-Finalist: All in the Family Dental Care

Semi-Finalist: Cloverleaf Tavern

Semi-Finalist: Suzi’s Sweet Shop

Sales $10M and Over

WINNER – Tingley Rubber

Finalist: Unique Photo

Finalist: Alfred Sanzari Enterprises

Semi-Finalist: My Limo

Semi-Finalist: Parker Interior Landscape

Semi-Finalist: Spectra Colors

To access more business news, visit NJB News Now.

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