2022 JA Evansville Regional Business Hall of Fame Laureates Announced
Evansville, IN (02/01/2022) — Junior Achievement (JA) of Southwestern Indiana and Old National Bank announced the 2022 Junior Achievement Evansville Regional Business Hall of Fame Laureates at a press conference on February 1 at the University of Evansville (UE). The 2022 Laureates are Douglas "Doug" A. Bawel, Randy Miller, A.B. Brown (1900-1992), and Thomas W. Traylor (1940-2013).
The Laureates will be inducted into the JA Evansville Regional Business Hall of Fame at a celebration breakfast Thursday, May 12, at 8 a.m. at Old National Events Plaza.
The announcement was made by Christopher M. Pietruszkiewicz, president of UE, who served as co-chair of this year's Laureate Selection Committee.
"The University of Evansville is thrilled to host this year's announcement, and it was an honor to be a part of this selection process," said Pietruszkiewicz. "Their stories demonstrate their impact on our community and their legacies provide inspiration for our future."
Individuals are nominated for their outstanding civic and business contributions to southwestern Indiana and recognized for their business excellence, vision and innovation, inspirational leadership, courageous thinking and action, and community mindedness.
"Junior Achievement strives to empower our younger generation and to provide a pathway for a successful future," Pietruszkiewicz said. "These annual awards are important, and the JA Evansville Regional Business Hall of Fame provide great examples of so many opportunities to better our local community. We hope that our 2022 Laureates inspire students to make a difference in our communities."
Companies who would like to join Junior Achievement of Southwestern Indiana at the 2022 Evansville Regional Business Hall of Fame, presented by Old National Bank, may purchase a table or tickets by contacting Tim Young at 812.425.8152 or email@example.com.
Biographical Information on the Laureates:
Doug Bawel: Jasper Engines and Transmissions
Douglas "Doug" A. Bawel is the president of Jasper Engine and Transmission Exchange, Inc. He joined Jasper Engine and Transmission Exchange as a sales trainee in 1976 after graduating from the University of Evansville with a degree in marketing and management. He rose to the position of Vice President before partnering with a group to purchase the company from its founder. Following the purchase in 1987, he was named President and CEO.
Since 1989, the company has been involved with NASCAR, first as a sponsor and team engine supplier, and later as Jasper Motorsports (Penske-Jasper Engines in partnership with Roger Penske) and Penske-Jasper Racing. In 2009, Jasper Engines sold Penske-Jasper Engines and Penske-Jasper Racing, preferring to focus on racing transmissions. The company also purchased Mac Motors Postal Division forming Jasper Innovative Solutions, which was created to sell parts to the U.S. Postal Service. In 2010, the company's stock was transferred to Jasper Engine and Transmission's 100 percent Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) to reward their people for their efforts, preserve jobs in southern Indiana, and pass along the Jasper legacy. In 2018, Jasper Engines & Transmissions was named ESOP Company of the Year by the ESOP Association, Indiana Chapter. Since 2010, the company's ESOP stock grew from $2.30/share to over $220/ share at the end of 2016. In July of 2011, Bawel was named Chairman of the Board of Jasper Engines and also remains in his role as CEO.
Bawel is a past recipient of the Indiana Business Leader of the Year Award, the Indiana Corporate Leadership Award and the Entrepreneur of the Year for Manufacturing. In 2019, he was inducted into the JA Dubois County Business Hall of Fame. He is also president of the board of Patoka Valley Health Care Cooperative and a board member of German American Bank and OFS Brands.
Randy Miller: Consultant, South Western Communications, Inc.
Randy Miller's entrepreneurial spirit was unleashed when he launched South Western Communications in 1976. His vision for the company was to become a trusted resource for his clients, by continuously researching new opportunities and providing only the best-in class video, sound, and business communication products. Miller is a true visionary and exemplary entrepreneur and has always been deeply committed to growing his business, a company with an ongoing reputation for quality and commitment to its clients and customers. He is an excellent leader and highly respected by colleagues and employees, setting high standards for his team - standards he strives to uphold to ensure the best client outcomes.
Throughout his career, Miller has focused on giving back to the community, whether by sharing his knowledge and networking with other like-minded businesspeople or by serving on a variety of boards where he has contributed his ideas to help other organizations operate more efficiently. The community has benefited significantly from his selfless, ambitious leadership. Miller participates on numerous boards and dedicates much of his time and effort to countless charities and organizations including: Catholic Charities Diocese of Evansville, the Catholic Foundation of Southwestern Indiana, Evansville Police Department Foundation, Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation Foundation, Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation Business Advisory Board, German American Bank, Koch Air, LLC., St. Mary's Health Foundation and many more.
A. B. Brown: Chairman and President of SIGECO
A.B. Brown was a low-key, yet tremendously effective business leader. He was a critical community leader responsible for attracting thousands of high-paying industrial jobs to our community at a time when the area was devastated by the closure of several large manufacturing plants. His role in attracting Alcoa, GE Plastics, and Babcock &Wilcox to the area highlight his visionary leadership. In addition to creating direct jobs, many more of our citizens were - and still are - employed in local businesses that support these enterprises.
Brown preached the need for civic involvement by the business community to bring industrial expansion to Evansville. Brown was also the first chair of the new Industrial Development Division of the local Chamber of Commerce, which led to numerous companies locating in the Evansville area. In his earlier time at SIGECO, he led a courageous group of SIGECO employees and supporting contractors in keeping the city supplied with electricity from the Ohio River station during the 1937 flood. Nearly all other power plants from Pittsburgh to the Mississippi were flooded out. Brown was an active member of many business and civic organizations, including National City Bank Board of Directors, Deaconess Hospital Foundation Board of Directors, and the local Chamber of Commerce, as well as state and regional organizations.
Thomas Traylor: President and CEO of Traylor Bros., Inc.
Tom Traylor led a solidly founded family-owned business, headquartered in Evansville, to become one of our nation's most reputable leaders in the underground, bridge and marine construction industries. The company today is a highly successful multi-divisional organization operating in all regions of the United States and Canada and is one of the most respected general contractors in North America. Traylor Bros. has permanent offices in California, Louisiana, Texas, and Virginia, and due to their commitment to their family's hometown, Traylor Bros. maintains its headquarters right here at home. The company is currently managed by two of Traylor's sons. Under Tom Traylor's leadership, the company has positively affected the state of infrastructure in the United States. Traylor Bros. has completed more than 130 large bridge and marine projects, and over 100 underground projects such as light rail and water tunnels. The significant technical expertise required to complete these projects resides right here in Evansville. The company has recently grown to encompass the Traylor Construction Group, which has revenues of nearly $700 million.
Tom Traylor served as director on various community, university, and national boards, including Fifth Third Bank and the University of Evansville; supported many civic and community organizations, including the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra; contributed generously to the advancement of education and technology; and was a strong supporter of the Catholic Church. His family's generous contribution to Memorial High School helped build the new Traylor Family Soccer Stadium. Soccer was another passion of Tom's throughout his adult life.
About University of Evansville
Students at the University of Evansville shape powerful and enduring change. UE is the first in Indiana to be designated as an Ashoka U Changemaker Campus, and its changemaking culture empowers students to improve the world around them as UE Changemakers. UE has an array of majors in business; engineering; the arts and sciences; and health science programs. UE has a diverse student body that represents 44 states and 52 countries. For more information, please visit evansville.edu.
About Junior Achievement of Southwestern Indiana (JASWIN)
Junior Achievement of Southwestern Indiana is empowering young people to own their economic success. Our volunteer-based K-12 programs foster work and career readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy skills, and use experiential learning to inspire kids to dream big and reach their potential. JASWIN serves 15 counties and over 28,000 students in Southwestern Indiana and Southeastern Illinois and began in 1964. For more information, visit swindiana.ja.org.