Proctor, Oklahoma-based awards retailer Turtle Nation Engraving was named Certified Indian Retailer of the Year at the 9th Annual Cherokee Nation Tribal Employment Rights Office (TERO) Awards Banquet on November 17 at the Hard Rock Casino in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The Cherokee Nation honors the top eight TERO-certified businesses-American Indian-owned vendors-who are able to do business with the tribe and better compete for government contracting jobs. Turtle Nation Engraving was awarded Retailer of the Year among over 800 TERO-certified businesses.
“It was incredible for us to be able to receive an award like that because it is a huge nation with 843 (TERO-certified) vendors,” Turtle Nation Engraving Co-Owner Shelly Turtle tells A&E magazine. “To be chosen as a small business out of all of those businesses, it was a very prestigious award to us. We are very blessed and honored to receive it.”
Operating out of their garage, Shelly and her husband, John, founded Turtle Nation Engraving in May of 2013 as a part-time job on the side.
What started out as a hobby to help some of our friends that own a T-shirt shop has grown tremendously in three years. “We have just been blessed with order and grown to where it’s become a full-time job,” Turtle adds. Turtle Nation Engraving offers laser engraving services, personalized awards, gifts, promotional items, trophies and awards. With a sublimation printer and heat press, they also offer full-color customization. “You have to get creative sometimes, but we try to do anything that a customer throws our way,” she says.
While both Shelly and John hold two full-time jobs while raising their children, Retailer of the Year isn’t the first award Turtle Nation Engraving has received in its short time as a TERO-certified business. Last year, they received recognition as runner up for Small Business of the Year.
Other TERO-certified businesses honored at the banquet include:
- Woman-Owned Business of the Year: T-N-T Professional Masonry of Stilwell
- Community Leadership Award: Johnson Plumbing of Stilwell
- Consulting Firm of the Year: TriArch, PLLC of Tulsa
- Customer Service Award: Computer Solutions Inc. of Waxahachie, Texas
- Small Business of the Year: T&M Precision Services LLC of Claremore
- Large Business of the Year: Builders Unlimited Inc. of Tulsa
- Construction Company of the Year: TTA Construction of Gore
For more information about Turtle Nation Engraving, visit www.turtlenation.net.