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SBA Names Minnesota Encore Entrepreneur of the Year
Walker, Minn. – Jeffrey Morrill, President of CavCom, Inc., based in Walker, Minn., has been named the Minnesota Encore Entrepreneur of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The Encore Entrepreneur of the Year is a newly developed award based on success as measured by sales and profits, increased employment opportunities created by the business, development and/or utilization of innovative or creative business methods, and demonstrated entrepreneurial potential necessary for long-term business success and economic growth. The business owner must have a three-year track record and must have started the business after the age of fifty (50). Gail Leverson, Executive Director of the Cass County Economic Development Corporation, nominated Jeffrey for this award.
CavCom is a privately-held company with manufacturing facilities in Walker, Minn., and regional sales staff throughout the U.S. Started in 2006, CavCom’s focus is specialty hearing protection and accessories for 2-way radios. CavCom is recognized for innovation in designing products to prevent hearing loss and improve 2-way communications in high noise and/or respirator environments. Traditional radio microphones and headsets don’t work well in extremely high noise or when respirator devices are employed. CavCom products provide optimum hearing protection and comfort where immediate 2-way communication is critical for work safety and product quality. CavCom recognized that employees demand comfort, durability and personal protection as well as clear speech communication.
Jeffrey holds a master’s degree in Audiology from Texas Tech University and has been a leading innovator in the audiology field since 1972. From that time until 1998, he founded, built and managed Impact Health Services, Inc. (IHS) in Kansas City, MO. IHS provided mobile occupational health testing and consulting services to over 5,000 manufacturing locations throughout the United States and Canada. This resulted in more than 750,000 employee examinations annually to maintain safe and healthy hearing conditions for workers exposed to loud noise and other hazards in the workplace. The testing services delivered to employees included audiometrics, respirator fit testing and noise analysis. Jeffrey authored and developed the first database analysis system (ECHO) for audiometric measurements in compliance with OSHA noise regulations and innovated on-site analysis and immediate notification technologies. More recently, Jeff invented the CavCom “Talk Through Your Ears” radio communication system. This revolutionary and patented technology received the “Technology of the Year Award” by the Silicon Prairie Technology Association in 1997.
In 1998, Jeffrey sold IHS to US Health-Works, where he would work as President of the Preventive Services Division until 2000. In this role, he managed the growth and consolidation of the new health and safety division for US Health-Works. His responsibilities included acquisitions, integration of companies and services into a single source.
In 2000, Jeffrey turned his attention full-time to developing CavCom products, first with Dooley Tackaberry, Inc., of Deer Park, Texas, and then founding CavCom, Inc. as a privately-held independent company. Jeff was 61 years old when he started this present business. The offices were moved to a new building at the Walker, Minn. Industrial Park in 2006, consolidating manufacturing from vendors in 5 states to Minnesota vendors with final assembly at the Walker facility. During this time, Jeffrey implemented new product development, streamlined manufacturing processes and developed an international sales and marketing campaign. CavCom, Inc. sales have increased steadily through 2012.
Jeffrey has significant experience in the hearing conservation/communications business and is well networked in the industry. He is a member of many professional associations including the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), where he served as the Noise Committee Chairperson. He was Co-editor of the AIHA Noise & Hearing Conservation Manual, Fourth Edition and a former board member and chairperson for the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC) representing the AIHA. This wealth of professional contacts and industry experience enables Jeff to contract and develop new and innovative solutions for high noise and respirator communication applications.
Born and raised in Dakota County, he received his Bachelor’s Degree from Mankato State in 1963, taught in the Bemidji Public School system following graduation from Mankato, then worked for the Minnesota Department of Health before leaving the State for a brief 30 years. His wife, Barbara, and three of their sons work in the company,
Jeffrey will be honored at the Minnesota Small Business Week Awards program on May 6, 2013, at the Depot Minneapolis.
For more information:
1872 Industries Lane
Walker, MN 56484