NOMINEE NARRATIVES 2022: Entrepreneur of the Year

In our final Nominee Narrative series, the Entrepreneur of the Year Nominees all share an amazing purpose and mission in the Collierville business community. Hamby Auto Concierge, Hook Point Brewing, Lost Pizza Co.- Collierville, and Simply Done Catering are all fantastic honorees for this category.

Hamby Auto Concierge 

Mike Hamby has been in the car business his entire career. He took on the role of being an ‘Auto Concierge’ for people in the community a few years ago and has taken off ever since. Joy and respect are some characteristics every customer who works with Hamby witnesses. Joined by his wife, Denise, it’s a mighty two-person team who works with people who need a new car or want their lifelong dream car. Making those dream car finds are some of his most special memories. He becomes emotional while recounting helping a father get his daughter the perfect car for her 16th birthday. Or when he helped a Collierville school teacher get a coveted red corvette for her birthday.

The customers always come first, which is something that can be hard to find in a traditionally distrustful industry such as the auto industry. “The reputation of car salesmen is not great,” explains Hamby. But he and Denise work every day to change that narrative.  This becomes noticeable when speaking with him about all his past customers like he just helped them out last week. The ease and excitement he uses to recount customer stories are priceless. “They are a friend first,” Hamby importantly notes. He looks to bring a fresh and welcoming understanding of a car salesman.

Hamby and his wife also work with older adult groups and families who are trying to dispose of excess cars. “We’ll take the car off their hands for no cost,” Hamby explains. This is a huge relief for those who are juggling all sorts of ‘season of life’ changes with aging family members.  Connecting with customers is the number one priority for the duo.

Hook Point Brewing 

Mike Sadler, owner of Flat Hat and Hook Point Brewing, had “no expectations on being nominated,” but it’s “definitely an honor” to be recognized. A former Navy pilot, Mike initially started ‘Flat Hat’ as an activist lifestyle brand (“life at full speed”). Hook Point Brewing was an unplanned part of that creation. Mike had no previous experience with beer, other than just being a hearty consumer of the drink. Now, he’s become the owner of Collierville’s only brewery. After a couple of speedbumps, and while they still brew beer in the town, Hook Point recently opened a new location at Brookhaven Circle in January to accommodate for growing popularity, while also having food options for customers. This expansion also allows for the Flat Hat brand to reenergize and return to its roots. It’s definitely a new and exciting era for the company.

Mike gives a ton of credit to his amazing team: Cindy, his wife and interior designer of the new location (she has veto power), Jay Marchman, brewer and the company’s first hire, Maggie Emerson, sales, marketing and operations manager, and Tess Harris, chef who creates a stellar menu in conjunction with the beer on tap.

Check out their new location on Brookhaven Circle, Wednesday-Sunday.

Hook Point Brewing Website

Lost Pizza Co.- Collierville

Lost Pizza, Co. started in Indianola, Mississippi, in 2007. But, thanks to Tim Gaines, the delightful pizza chain became a staple in 2019. Owner of two Lost Pizza locations (also in 2012, Tim opened the Southaven, MS location), Tim loves the Collierville location. “There has always been a sense of community here, and I wanted my business to be a part of that,” says Tim.  Tim is very complimentary of the business community in Collierville. The depth of it makes the nomination even more special for Lost Pizza Co.- Collierville. They are all “incredible people with amazing stories so I’m just appreciative of being included in that group,” explains Tim. It’s this combination of a strong business and citizen community that makes it an ideal spot for Lost Pizza.

There’s a ton of acclaim for Lost Pizza’s delicious offerings, being named by several local publications as best pizza in the area, including the Collierville Herald for the past two years. But what really makes Lost Pizza so special and successful is the team. Running back and forth between two locations in two states, “I wouldn’t be in this position without a lot of good people around me” Tim explains. He recognizes Collierville’s General Manager, Christie Treadway, as a “mom to our kids out there.” This is especially important as this is many high school kid’s first real job.

Finally, Tim mentions his 80-year-old mother as a key piece to Lost Pizza- Collierville’s success. A retired ER RN and cancer survivor, Tim’s mom decided to help out during the worst time for restaurants: the COVID-19 pandemic. “She’s been a morning staple for us ever since,” hand making every salad, pasta, or sub that gets ordered for lunch during the week. “It doesn’t get any better than that.” Ultimately, it all goes back to the people and family.

Lost Pizza Co.- Collierville Website 

Simply Done Catering 

Simply Done Catering by Karen Shelton has become a staple in Collierville business meetings and special occasions. They are the anchor luncheon sponsor for the Chamber’s 2023 Monthly Meetings. Karen gives huge props to all business owners in Collierville for making her own business so successful. It’s “amazing to be recognized in this manner” when there are so many other great businesses in Collierville that are just as deserving. The businesses of Collierville, “and the men and women who own them,” are a bright spot in the Town.

Despite the “crazy twist and turns the last few years brought” Simply Done has remained successful “because we truly do care about our clients.” The clients “are often trusting us with one of their most important days, and we take that very seriously.” Simply Done understands the weight of being part of people’s milestone moments. Flexibility is also key when serving such a large and diverse clientele. Catering to their needs is important.

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