Brad and Angie Barber, founders of Cabin Coffee in Clear Lake, IA chosen for America’s SBDC, Iowa’s Neal Smith Entrepreneur of the Year Award
The winners of the 2018 Neal Smith Entrepreneur of the Year Award are Brad and Angie Barber, founders of Cabin Coffee in Clear Lake, IA. SBDC State Director Lisa Shimkat presented the Barbers’ award in front of legislators and former SBDC board members during a special reception held at the Iowa State Capitol on March 9, 2018.
The award is presented annually to an Iowa entrepreneur who has been in business for a minimum of three years and has sought out significant help from an America’s SBDC, Iowa center. The purpose of the award is to encourage Iowa’s entrepreneurs and to recognize them as the driving force behind the economic growth in the state. Established in 2006 by America’s SBDC, Iowa, the award is named after former creator and Chairman of the Small Business Development Center and long-time Congressman, Neal Smith. It continues to recognize his spirit of leadership and his contributions to the SBDC program and small businesses in Iowa.
According to a release from the Statewide SBDC, the Barbers said they realized that a cozy gathering place was missing from the Main Street of their busy tourist town and founded Cabin Coffee in 2002 to fill that need. Once their idea was in motion, they sought the help of the North Iowa Area Pappajohn SBDC to expand and franchise their business model. For the last 15 years, their business has continued to grow and serve the community of Clear Lake.
With a deep commitment to their community and North Iowa, the Barbers have used North Iowa Area Pappajohn SBDC and other Iowa based companies to help them on their business journey. Cabin Coffee has grown to 15 locations and 13 franchises across 7 states. The Barbers have kept their headquarters in North Iowa no matter how large their business has grown and continue to support other local businesses and young entrepreneurs through local programs and education.