IDB holds honor luncheon

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 8, 2007

DEMOPOLIS &8212; Just as they do every year, the Demopolis Industrial Development Board took an hour out of the busy lives of the area&8217;s business leaders and community service people to thank them for their contributions to the city and its growth.

IDB Chairman of the John Laney began his remarks by saying, &8220;You are the reason we are here and you are what drives us.&8221;

In addition to business leaders, County Commissioners Dr. Ken Tucker and Freddie Armstead; City Councilmen Jack Cooley, Woody Collins and Melvin Yelverton; and state Rep. A. J. McCampbell and Sen. Bobby Singleton attended the luncheon.

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Laney recognized two people out of the crowd of distinguished attendees: John Cox, a former IDB chairman and James Suttles, founder of Suttles Trucking.

Cox served as the IDB chairman from 2005-2006 and worked with the board for 27 years. Laney presented him with the Outstanding Service Award.

Laney said Cox was influential in the city getting such businesses as New Era, Rock-Tenn, and helping to develop the South Industrial Park. Furthermore, Laney said Cox&8217;s philosophy was to promote existing businesses as much as to bring in new ones.

The second award, the Outstanding Achievement Award, was given was to James A. Suttles, who grew his trucking company from three rigs in 1986 to over 1,000 in 2007.

Suttles was also responsible for inventing a lightweight trailer, which could be used to increase hauling capacity. Laney quoted Suttles&8217;s business philosophy as &8220; give the shipper added value.&8221;

The guest speaker for the luncheon was Sen. Bobby Singleton, who spoke about Demopolis&8217;s strides in business development and growth. He also spoke about the challenges ahead for the Black Belt.