FARMINGTON — Lucky Ridge Welding & Mining Services was named Company of the Year by the San Juan College Enterprise Center at the business incubator's annual awards last week.
The industry contractor graduated from the Enterprise Center in 2008 and moved to Bloomfield. Lucky Ridge continued to expand and moved earlier this year into a larger shop at 3890 Morningstar Dr. in Farmington.
“He had a passion. He had a good idea,” said Roxanne Simpson, praising her husband, General Manager Anthony Simpson.
Lucky Ridge started out as an oilfield construction company. When oil and gas drilling dipped in 2009, the Simpsons decided to focus on the mining industry.
“We didn't miss a beat,” Roxanne said. “Now we are a mining construction company.”
Lucky Ridge maintains a labor pool of welders, electricians and carpenters that it hires out as needed. The company has 32 employees.
Enterprise Center Interim Director Judy Castleberry doled out several other awards at the Nov. 10 event.
The Enterprise Center's internal first-place award went to Lewis Steven Campbell, president of Cintigy Systems, a tech company that provides Internet and database management, information technology services and training.
“His business has had some challenges, but what's most impressive is a business person who works through their challenges,” said Judy Castleberry, the Enterprise Center's interim director.
Second place went to Doug Lenberg, president of Real Green Building Systems, a construction consulting firm specializing in environmentally friendly building practices.
In third place was Tom Gibbons, who opened San Juan Closet Works in July. Gibbons makes custom closets for homeowners.
Castleberry said the businesses that were recognized weren't necessarily the longest-tenured at the Enterprise Center.
“It's not always the person who has been here the longest, it's the person who works on their business,” she said.
Castleberry also recognized three “Champions of Business Incubation”:
• Gibby Wood, a Farmington real estate agent who was retiring after several years on the Enterprise Center's board.
• Eileen Shelton, longtime coordinator at the Enterprise Center.
• Jasper Welch, who stepped down this year after nearly 12 years as the Enterprise Center's director.
“I have followed in Jasper's shoes,” said Castleberry. “And I can tell you, they are very big shoes.”
T. Greg Merrion, president of Merrion Oil & Gas, gave the keynote speech. He had a piece of advice for fledgling entrepreneurs.
“You need to realize what you're good at and not good at, and there's people and resources to help you with the things you're not good at,” he said.