Thanks to its recuperative efforts in the wake of 2004’s Hurricane Charley, Quality Self Storage received one of two Donna Heidenreich Business of the Year Awards bestowed by the Punta Gorda (Fla.) Chamber of Commerce. Named after the late executive director of the Punta Gorda Business Alliance, the precursor to the chamber, the honor is based on several criteria:
- Business growth (increase in revenue and work force)
- Commitment to innovation and professional development
- Community service
- Ability to recover after adversity
Before and after the storm, Quality Self Storage provided free storage to local churches, schools, and non-profit organizations, even though it sustained losses of its own. Beth Headrick, the facility’s general manager of 10 years, said gusts blew the skylights out of the main building and wrecked much of the interior, including portions of the walls. One smaller building lost its roof, and the rest suffered minor damage. The heavy rain that followed the storm did more damage than the hurricane itself, Headrick said. The business didn’t reopen until July 2005.
The Punta Gorda facility is owned by Brad Baldwin and Tom Parsley, who are also partners in several other self-storage ventures. Quality Self Storage and its co-winner, Naples, Fla.-based Stock Development, were chosen from 14 nominations.