Event sponsored by Mexico Area Chamber and City of Mexico
Graf & Sons was honored Tuesday night at the 29th annual Commerce & Industry Appreciation Dinner. The annual event is sponsored by the Mexico Area Chamber of Commerce and the City of Mexico.
Willy Coffer, long-time Graf employee, gave the history of the company, explaining how it started out as a small retail store, expanding throughout the years and today is known in United States and the world as "The Reloading Authority."
The business was started by Arnold Graf and two sons, Howard and Bob. What began as a three-man operation now employees 60 full-time, temporary and part-time workers.
In 2007, the business expanded and in 2008 the company moved into its new addition. Coffer stated that last winter, the shipping department shipped out 10,000 packages in one month. "This was all done with people," Coffer explained.
He went on to say that Graf and Sons is dedicated to hard work and to its customers. "I take a lot of pride in working for the company," concluded Coffer.
Bob and Marjorie Graf accepted the award in front of a standing ovation. Marjorie Graf told the audience "Mexico is a great place to live and is a central location for a distribution center." She also gave her appreciation to past and present employees for their hard work.
In addition to the award, the Grafs were presented a Proclamation from Rep. Jay Houghton and from Mexico Mayor Ron Loesch. Prior to the meal, Josh Hanley, president of the Mexico Area Chamber of Commerce, gave the greetings and opening remarks. Harvey House, son-in-law of Bob and Marjorie Graf, gave the invocation before the meal.
Past recipients of the award include: A.P. Green Industries, 1985; Audrain Medical Center, 1986; National Refractories, 1987; Missouri Military Academy, 1988; Commerce Bank, 1989; Mexico Heating Company, 1990; Crown Linen Service, 1991; Continental Products, 1991; First National Bank, 1993, Optec D.D., USA Inc., 1994; Union Electric, 1995; Biocraft Laboratories, 1996; Pilcher's Jewelry Company, 1997; M&M Golf Cars Inc., 1998; Martinsburg Bank & Trust, 1999; Hickman's IGA, 2000; Pearl Motor Company, 2001; Consolidated Electric Cooperative, 2002; Brookstone Company, 2003; The Mexico Ledger, 2004; KXEO/ KWWR, 2005; Spartan Light Metal Products, 2006; Sydenstricker Implement Company, 2007; Ben's Auto Body, 2008; Zenith Aircraft, 2009; United Credit Union, 2010; Dawn Food, 2011; and Gold Crest Distributing, 2012.