FedEx Ground Names Entrepreneurs of the Year
PITTSBURGH, Aug. 12, 2008—FedEx Ground recognized three small business owners Saturday with one of the company’s highest honors for independent contractors. Keith Herzig of Hartford, Conn., Sunil K. Patel of Philadelphia and Raymond Skiptunis of Trenton, N.J., were named FedEx Ground Entrepreneurs of the Year at a banquet recognizing them for their business development, customer service results, safety record, and community support.
The FedEx Ground Entrepreneur of the Year honor was established in 2007 to pay tribute to those independent contractors who have built businesses that most consistently go the extra mile to safely deliver superior customer service, help fellow independent contractors succeed, and support their local communities. Of the more than 13,000 independent contractors supporting the FedEx Ground network, Herzig, Patel and Skiptunis were recognized for best exemplifying these traits in 2007-2008.
“The Entrepreneur of the Year honor is our way of recognizing those independent contractors who personify the attributes that make the FedEx experience what it is today,” said Dave Rebholz, the company’s president and chief executive officer. “We are proud to partner with such outstanding small business owners in finding better ways to serve our mutual customers and build our businesses together.”
Since the founding of the Entrepreneur of the Year program, FedEx Ground has named 140 regional honorees. Herzig, Patel and Skiptunis were selected from a group of 20 finalists from this year’s regional winners. The following are brief biographical profiles of the three honorees:
In 1988, Keith Herzig was a novice truck driver with limited knowledge of running his own business. Today, Keith owns Herzig Hauling, a FedEx Ground contract linehaul operation that encompasses 14 vehicles, 16 drivers, a fleet manager and an operations manager. Keith’s team has amassed an impressive safety record in posting zero at-fault accidents. A regular participant and former safe driving titleholder from the National Truck Driving Championships in 2000, Herzig also serves his community as president and founder of the “Wishes on Wheels” truck convoy. Founded by Herzig in 2000, this growing annual event raised more than $100,000 in 2007 and is the largest fund raiser for the Connecticut Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Watch Keith’s Story – Video
Sunil K. Patel
Sunil Patel was the co-owner of a messenger service business for 17 years before purchasing his first FedEx Ground delivery route in Philadelphia eight years ago. Today, Sunil’s company — PA Ground 2, Inc – is the second-largest pick-up and delivery business supporting the FedEx Ground network, operating 14 vehicles and employing as many drivers managing more than 1,000 deliveries a day. In addition to being named an Entrepreneur of the Year, Sunil has garnered a number of Contractor of the Month designations. He was also the first rookie to be named Contractor of the Year and the first independent contractor to be named to FedEx Ground’s prestigious Circle of Honor.
Watch Sunil’s Story – Video
After a 20-year finance career on Wall Street, Raymond Skiptunis walked away from the ‘Street and into FedEx Home Delivery in 2001. After a stint as a temporary driver, he bought his first route in 2003.Today, Raymond’s business, RMS Delivery LLC., includes six primary service areas, two additional routes, 16 vehicles and 15-20 employees in various capacities. He is widely recognized among his colleagues as a go-to person for assistance and advice on financial and operational issues, and he has counseled many fellow independent contractors on how to expand and strengthen their businesses.
Watch Ray’s Story – Video
About FedEx Ground
FedEx Ground has a network of more than 500 distribution hubs and local pickup-and-delivery terminals throughout the United States and Canada. The company reported annual revenue of $6.75 billion in fiscal year 2008.
About FedEx Corp.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $38 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world’s most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 290,000 employees and contractors to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit news.fedex.com.