DENVER, Colo. (Dec. 30, 2002) — As 2002 draws to a close, Sam Forbes' reign as the year's top entrepreneur in the Rocky Mountain Region also nears its end.
Mr. Forbes, president, CEO and chairman of Denver-based Peerless Tyre Co., was named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the compnay´s retail category for his region last June. At the November nationals, held in Palm Springs, Calif., Rowland Schaefer was named the national winner in the retail category. Mr. Schaefer is the president and chairman of Claire's Stores of Pembroke Pines, Fla. That chain has some 3,000 stores nationally with 19,000 employees.
But Mr. Forbes, whose company had 2001 sales of $100 million and 54 outlets in Wyoming, Colorado, South Dakota, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico and Texas, said he's happy with his regional title.
“I'm pretty humbled by the whole event. I had never won anything like that,” he said.
The recognition, which has largely played out in the trade press, continued in December with a profile in Chain Store Age. Mr. Forbes said his reign was an experience, but he does not plan to seek another win. His dealership sells primarily Peerless, Bridgestone, Dean and Dunlop brands.
Mr. Forbes, along with the regional, national and overall winners, will be inducted into Ernst & Young's Entrepreneur of the Year Hall of Fame. The awards were begun to honor entrepreneurs who sustained successful growing businesses through ingenuity, Ernst & Young said. Past national winners include executives from Dell Computer Corp., Sun Microsystems and Amazon.com.