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Virginia Mirror praised on centennial
Firm referred to as model company
Henry County Administrator Tim Hall addresses the crowd as Virginia Mirror marks its 100th anniversary. (Bulletin photo)
Friday, October 11, 2013
By MICKEY POWELL - Bulletin staff writer
Virginia Mirror Co. is a model for other companies to follow, according to Martinsville Mayor Kim Adkins.
The family-owned company has been in business for 100 years because “it never swayed from its core principles of quality, craftsmanship and superior customer service,” Adkins said Thursday afternoon during a luncheon the company held for employees and retirees to mark the anniversary.
Records in the city revenue commissioner’s office indicate Virginia Mirror is Martinsville’s longest-operating company, she noted.
Virginia Mirror was established in 1913 by Michael and Nicholas Schottland, the grandfather and great-uncle, respectively, of Chris Beeler, the company’s chairman. It originally made mirrors for furniture companies but in the early 1980s began targeting its products mostly to residential construction.
The company launched its subsidiary, Virginia Glass Products, in 1956. At its plant in Ridgeway, that firm makes products other than mirrors, such as glass entrances and shower enclosures.
Virginia Mirror has been “a blessing for this community,” said Henry County Administrator Tim Hall.
“Nothing stays here 100 years because of luck,” Hall said, noting that a century equals approximately 36,500 days. He credited hard work by employees as the main reason for the company’s success.
Company President and Chief Executive Officer John Korff said the company has had “terrific employees” throughout its existence.
“Without you, this (anniversary) wouldn’t have been possible,” Human Resources Manager Beverly Riddle told the employees and retirees.
Jason Haslip has worked on the silver line at Virginia Mirror since April. He said the company is a good one to work for, yet he and other workers simply are happy “we have a job” due to economic factors.
Adkins said that to survive in a competitive global economy, Virginia Mirror “capitalized on market opportunities (and) diversified its product offerings.”
She also praised the company’s senior management team members, whom she said have had “remarkable vision while remaining truly humble ... staying out of the limelight” and instead crediting employees for the firm’s success.
“The city of Martinsville wishes you many more years of success,” she told company executives and employees. “We also sincerely thank you for your extraordinary leadership and positive corporate citizenship. You’re a role model that all of us would like to emulate.”
Other local officials who were at the luncheon, but did not speak publicly, included City Manager Leon Towarnicki, Assistant County Administrator Dale Wagoner, city Councilman Danny Turner and Debra Buchanan, Horsepasture District representative on the Henry County Board of Supervisors.
During the event, Adkins and Hall noted that while 1913 was an important year for Martinsville due to Virginia Mirror being established, it also was a significant year for the nation.
Other milestones of the year, they mentioned, included:
• The U.S. Postal Service started to make mail deliveries.
• Henry Ford introduced the first moving assembly line.
• Civil rights leader Rosa Parks was born, and
• President Woodrow Wilson gave the first State of the Union address.