Meet Loudoun’s Small Business and Entrepreneur of the Year

Meet Loudoun’s Small Business and Entrepreneur of the Year

The Wellness Connection was named Small Business of the Year and Allen Kabiri of Select Construction the Entrepreneur of the Year at the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce 22nd Annual Small Business Awards Nov. 4 at the National Conference Center in Lansdowne. Businesses were also recognized in the categories of nonprofit, service, tourism and rural, innovative, home based and retail.

The Wellness Connection

Susan McCormick is no stranger to the good that therapy can do for a person. After losing her husband in a car crash in 2002, McCormick cited therapy as a key part of her healing. Her therapist helped her so much that McCormick wanted to do the same for others and became a therapist herself, specializing in marriage counseling.

Susan McCormick, founder of the Wellness Connection.

Susan McCormick, founder of the Wellness Connection.

Later, McCormick’s own experience once again informed her vision of what wellness services should look like. When her son was diagnosed with ADHD, McCormick found that his different caregivers would give conflicting advice which interfered with his progress. McCormick was inspired to look into the connections between mind, body and spirit and found techniques that helped her son.

In 2009, she opened the Wellness Connection.

“I just decided, wouldn’t it be great to open a one-stop shop where people could be supported from every aspect of care,” McCormick said. “What makes the Wellness Connection unique is that I focus on the patient first, so every decision that I make, every process we develop, every program that we design is focused around patient care.”

The Wellness Connection offers a variety of services such as counseling, occupational and speech therapies, chiropractic care, acupuncture and massages. The team of professionals seek to not only treat the conditions that bring the patient to the practice, but to help patients live as healthily as possible.

“The long term goal of the Wellness Connection is to really change the face of mental health. Eighty percent of our business is focused on that and we really believe that the stigma that’s associated with that needs to be transformed,” McCormick said. “One in four people suffers from mental illness and it is not a subject we like to talk about, so it is a hard subject but I am talking about it. I am screaming from the rooftops about it. I am trying to change the landscape and how people approach it.”

The Wellness Connection has offices in Ashburn, Stone Ridge, and most recently Leesburg.

Allen Kabiri and Select Construction

Allen Kabiri started Select Construction in 2003 as a family-owned business that specializes in roofing, siding and gutter services. The Ashburn-based company now has 18 employees and has worked all over the county.

Unlike most businesses, Kabiri does no marketing or advertising for his company, so all of the business comes from word of mouth from satisfied customers.

Allen Kabiri, founder and owner of Select Construction.

Allen Kabiri, founder and owner of Select Construction.

“The key to my success is my dedication and the dedication of my staff, as well as the support I have of my family and three boys,” Kabiri said.

Trust and integrity are the main tenants of Select’s business ethic, he said.

Kabiri immigrated to America from Iran in 1976. From the beginning he worked hard, earned a college degree, and was exposed to the roofing industry. He learned all he could about the industry, starting as a part-time worker and eventually working his way up to a managerial position. Then he and a business partner decided to try to make it on their own.

“My company got to where it is today after my then business partner and I struck out on our own with $1,000, a Honda Civic and a healthy dose of fear,” Kabiri said.

Other Small Business Award winners are as follows:

Nonprofit Organization of the Year — Loudoun Youth

Retail Business of the Year — Best Rack Around

Tourism and Rural Business of the Year — Total Equine Veterinary

Service Business of the Year — The Wellness Connection

Innovative Business of the Year — Evergreen Sportsplex