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October 23, 2022 | Tom Ballard

Carbon Rivers earns U.S. Chamber’s “Small Business of the Year” award

The best of the best of small businesses in 2022, as judged by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, resides in Knoxville. It is Carbon Rivers LLC, a company we spotlighted in this May 2021 article.

In an announcement last week, the U.S. Chamber named the company, founded in 2017, as its national “Small Business of the Year” during the organization’s “Dream Big Awards” event in Washington, DC.

Eight winners were chosen from a record 3,000 applicants for individual business category awards, and Carbon Rivers won the top recognition which comes with a grand prize of $25,000.

In the 2021 article, the Knoxville-based start-up describes its mission as delivering  “innovative materials solutions to the composite world at large.” It was founded the same year Chief Executive Officer Bowie Benson graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) with his B.S. in Materials Engineering.

“If you have a vision, if you have something that is marketable and you really want to make a global impact … if you want to be a disruptor in your region and in your industry, do not give up, because it’s worth it,” said David Morgan, Chief Strategy Officer of Carbon Rivers. He’s pictured here on the right with Benson on the left.

To be eligible for the “Dream Big Awards,” a small business must be for-profit, operating for at least one year primarily within the U.S., and have less than 250 employees or have gross revenues of less than $20 million for both of the previous two years.

“This year’s finalists show that through ongoing challenges, the creativity and can-do attitude of small business owners and entrepreneurs is stronger than ever,” said Tom Sullivan, Vice President of Small Business Policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “[The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is] proud to host the ‘Dream Big Awards’ and celebrate the very best in American small business.”

Click here to learn more about the U.S. Chamber program and the other winners.

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