The Chester Business Association (CBA), each year, awards special recognition to a business and sometimes special awards for leadership or citizenship. This year, high on an overlook from Jim Daniels, local real estate agent, the Snead Stebbens Business Person of the Year was awarded.
J. Fletcher Kelly accepted this year’s honor. “He is a quiet, resilient and inspirational person to work with. He’s always friendly and as easy to be with as a glass of water on a hot day,” said Scott Fisher of New York Life.
Mr. Kelly is a principle in Virginia Waste Services, which has had a tough time of it since the construction crash some years ago, according to Fisher. Kelly motivated his employees and encourage them to keep their heads above water. Fisher said, his key employees stayed with him. Recently he has added a recycling facility to the VWS operation.
Keeping his employees healthy is number one for Kelly.He supports them with gym memberships and Weight Watchers program.
Kelly is on the Board of Directors of many local organizations including the Henricus Historical Park Foundation, he participated as treasurer of the Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce and has been a member of the Chester Business Association for a number of years.
He also supports school efforts in Chesterfield. He supports and speaks to engineer majors at Virginia State University, supports local high schools with financial assistance and fundraising. He is also a major sponsor of ChesterFest and many other local events.
Special recognition was given to Fred Carreras. He was awarded the Business Leadership Award. Fisher, a long time member of the CBA made the presentation.
“Everyone has something to say about Fred because everyone knows and remembers him,” Fisher said. “As his wife, Mary, has so so accurately stated, ‘Fred doesn’t get ulcers, he gives them.’”
Mr. Carreras, a business broker, has a passion for contributing to politics that comes from his desire to help his fellow man.
Fisher said, “Fred loves to say, ‘In my humble but totally accurate opinion…’ Fred will go to every length to help his fellow man.”
Carreras keeps a book with the name of everyone he has ever met and according to Fisher a few extra business cards to boot, and he never hesitates to give your card to someone he meets.
Fisher told the 50 person plus crowd that they should stay around a while so Fred can get to know you. He’s a people person.