Hartford Business Journal

January 23, 2017

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4 Hartford Business Journal • January 23, 2017 www.HartfordBusiness.com w w w. H a r t f o r d B u s i n e s s . c o m (860) 236-9998 E D I T O R I A L Greg Bordonaro Editor, ext. 139 gbordonaro@HartfordBusiness.com Gregory Seay News Editor, ext. 144 gseay@HartfordBusiness.com Matt Pilon News Editor, ext. 143 mpilon@HartfordBusiness.com John Stearns Staff Writer, ext. 145 jstearns@HartfordBusiness.com Patricia Daddona Web Editor, ext. 127 pdaddona@HartfordBusiness.com Stephanie Meagher Research Director Heide Martin Research Assistant B U S I N E S S Joe Zwiebel President and Publisher, ext. 132 jzwiebel@HartfordBusiness.com Donna Collins Associate Publisher, ext. 121 dcollins@HartfordBusiness.com Allison Williams Office & Sales Coordinator, ext. 122 awilliams@HartfordBusiness.com Amy Orsini Events Manager, ext. 134 aorsini@HartfordBusiness.com Kaleigh Hickey Events Coordinator, ext. 137 khickey@hartfordbusiness.com Christian J. Renstrom Advertising Director, ext. 126 crenstrom@HartfordBusiness.com David Hartley Sr. Accounts Manager, ext. 130 dhartley@HartfordBusiness.com William C. Lambot Sr. Accounts Manager, ext. 128 wlambot@hartfordbusiness.com John Vuillemot Sr. Accounts Manager, ext. 133 jvuillemot@hartfordbusiness.com Raki Zwiebel Credit and Collections Manager Valerie Clark Accounting Assistant/Office Manager Kim Vautour HR Director P R O D U C T I O N Lynn Mika Production Director/Marketing Coordinator, ext. 140 lmika@HartfordBusiness.com Christopher Wallace Art Director, ext. 147 cwallace@HartfordBusiness.com Peter Stanton CEO pstanton@nebusinessmedia.com Joseph Zwiebel President, ext. 132 jzwiebel@HartfordBusiness.com Mary Rogers COO/CFO mrogers@nebusinessmedia.com Subscriptions: Annual subscriptions are $84.95. To subscribe, visit HartfordBusiness.com, email hartfordbusiness@ cambeywest.com, or call (845) 267-3008. Advertising: For advertising information, please call (860) 236-9998. Please address all correspondence to: Hartford Business Journal, 15 Lewis Street, Suite 200, Hart ford CT 06103. News Department: If you have a news item: Call us at (860) 236-9998, fax us at (860) 570-2493, or e-mail us at news@HartfordBusiness.com Hartford Business Journal accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts or materials and in general does not return them to the sender. Hartford Business Journal (ISSN 1083-5245) is published weekly, 49x per year — including three special issues in July, November and December — by new England Business Media, LLC, 15 Lewis Street, Suite 200, Hartford, CT 06103. Periodicals postage paid at Hartford, CT. Tel: (860) 236-9998 • Fax (860) 570-2493 Copyright 2017. All rights reserved. Postmaster: Please send address changes to: Hartford Business Journal P.O. Box 330, Congers, NY 10920-9894 www.copyright.com Rutkowski daughter, Linda, 38, started as CEO in 2014. "I have a lot of stress and more gray hairs,'' Linda says, smiling. "As a business owner, you want to be successful, and you work really hard. It's always scary, especially with a lot of people shopping elsewhere; big stores and the internet. But we're keeping up with it. We'll be OK." Siblings Linda, Ron Jr., 53, and Arek, 43, comprise the company's leadership team. Linda oversees operations. Arek handles e-commerce. Ron Jr. directs the plumbing and heating operations. Annual revenues are about $2 million. Of the approximate 12 employees, about half are family members. Ron Sr., 72, is still a daily presence at the shop, helping where he can — and keeping things light-hearted. "Even I get stuff online now," Ron Sr. cracked. "And I was the last guy to buy a fax machine." He has a dozen grandkids, and a few great grand kids, so there likely will be future gener- ations of Rutkowski's in the family business. Linda has a degree in education from Central Connecticut State University and aspired to become a school teacher. But she was drawn by the Broad Street shop that has been a part of her life, since birth. "I like being in the store," said Linda, a mother of two children. "I've been here my whole life. I guess I just grew into it. I like the social aspect, the people. Getting to talk to the customers every day and getting to help them." When asked what the most challenging part of her job is, Linda laughed. "The cus- tomers," she replied. "There can be some challenging customers. I think that's with any business." In the early 20th century, New Britain was known as the Hardware City and even Hardware Capital of the World for its man- ufacturing stalwarts such as The Stanley Works and Fafnir Bearings; but also for the plethora of family hardware stores that dot- ted its landscape. These days, the city's manufacturing base is dying; Home Depot and Lowe's accelerated the closing of most of the mom and pop hard- ware stores. Rutkowski Paint & Hardware, however, has remained. The family saw the potential of technol- ogy — and, eventually, embraced it. Arek Rutkowski — fiddling with that com- puter — was indeed on to something. n Stan Simpson is the principal of Stan Simp- son Enterprises LLC, a strategic commu- nications consulting firm. He is also host of "The Stan Simpson Show," which airs Saturday, 5:30 a.m., on Fox 61. 2 0 1 7 For special sponsorship opportunities, please call your account representative, or Christian J. Renstrom, Advertising Director, at 860.236.9998 ext 126 or email to crenstrom@HartfordBusiness.com NOMINATE TODAY! Nominate yourself, or someone you know, today at: www.ct.gov/deep/GreenCircle JOIN US! Join us, for the GreenCircle Awards Event on June 8th at the CT Business Summit to meet and applaud this year's GreenCircle Awards honorees. This celebration of sustainability will recognize companies throughout Connecticut for their important contributions and achievements. Is your organization GREEN? The CT DEEP GreenCircle Sustainability Awards recognize businesses, schools, organizations, government entities, institutions and individuals from across the state of Connecticut that take a coordinated and holistic approach to reducing their environmental impact and resource demands. These sustainability efforts include everything from energy conservation, to reducing water usage, to increasing the recycling of materials. The GreenCircle Sustainability Awards are meant to reward these efforts. Winners will also be profiled in the Hartford Business Journal's Green Resource Guide, publishing in July. If you've made Connecticut cleaner and greener, you deserve a GreenCircle Sustainability award. NOMINATIONS CLOSE MARCH 10TH, 2017! In Partnership With: Presented By: and

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