Admittedly, it is easy to get depressed with all the “doom and gloom” that seems to have engulfed the world today.

A dangerous war is looming — or, so it appears. The economy isn’t exactly robust. The price of gasoline seems to rise on a minute-by-minute basis as the stock market shudders.

Consider this edition of The News as a bright spot in these troubling times. In this issue, we bring you the winners of our 2002 “Best Contractor To Work For” contest.

Thumb through these pages and you will find some shining examples of business owners who still care about their employees — and employees who still care about their bosses.

This issue is dedicated the seven regional winners:

  • New England Mechanical Services Inc. (Vernon, Conn.)

  • G.F. Bowman Inc. (Cleona, Pa.)

  • Estes Heating & Air Conditioning (Atlanta)

  • Airco Service Inc. (Tulsa, Okla.)

  • Energy Management Specialists Inc. (Cleveland)

  • McCarthy — Heating & Air Conditioning (Omaha, Neb.)

  • Service Champions Heating and Air Conditioning (Yorba Linda, Calif.)

    We just keep going back to these “words of wisdom” from Leland Smith, owner of Service Champions. When asked about his business philosophy, he replied: “Our goal is simple. Take care of the customer first, the employees second, and never worry about the company. If the first two are happy, the company will always be taken care of.”

    Stories on each of these seven regional winners are included in this March 10, 2003 issue.

    Publication date: 03/10/2003