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Mueller wins Blakeman award at Hudson CC banquet

The Marie Blakeman Award was presented to longtime Hudson business Dick Mueller at the Hudson Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau annual Awards Banquet at the Hudson Golf Club Thursday night, Jan. 24.

Mueller is the owner and longtime operator of True Value Hardware in Plaza 94. He began his hardware career in downtown Hudson in 1947, taking over the store owned by his father. His business was one of the biggest in Hudson for many years and moved to Plaza 94 in 1975.

He always promoted Hudson and initiated many retail promotions in the community for several decades. His son Bruce now operates the store.

Other award winners were:

--Large Business of the Year (more than 20 employees): Erickson Oil/Freedom.

The award was accepted by Dave Erickson. The Hudson-based company has over 800 employees with convenience stores and gas stations throughout the Midwest.

--Small Business of the Year (less than 20 employees): Phipps Center for the Arts.

The award was accepted by John Potter. The non-profit community theater has a $1.2 million annual budget and has a large volunteer network to operate the facility.

--Chamber Member of the Year: Jeff Redmon.

He has been a chamber board member and has been involved in numerous Chamber of Commerce activities since joining in 2001. He also initiated the "Leadership Hudson" program. He is owner of Redmon Law Charter.

--Community Volunteer of the Year: Dave Robson.

He has impacted the community with involvement in numerous organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Daybreak Rotary, Big Brother Big Sister and the St. Croix Valley YMCA. He is the manager of Hudson Chrysler Dodge Jeep.

--New chair. Citizens State Bank President Gene Haberman took the gavel as 2008 chair of the Chamber. He takes the reins from Rollie Carlson, manager of the Hudson Golf Club.

For more information about the banquet, see the Jan. 31 edition of the Star-Observer.