Business grad student picks up first-hand experience

svaughan@vagazette.com

Finding a way to keep students at the College of William and Mary in town after they graduate is often discussed. After all, the presence of a highly-educated workforce is a factor in attracting businesses to the area.

One Yorktown heating, ventilation and air conditioning company is providing a model.

AC Masters, has been in business for 16 years. Recently, owner Javier Aguirre chose to hire a student from W&M's business administration program to help manage the business to allow himself and his technicians to spend more time with customers and less time with paperwork.

"I wanted to spend more time with my customers and less time focused on the day-to-day tasks of running a business. Now, whenever I get a call to go out to someone's home, I can be sure to give them the time and attention they deserve," he said.

Local graduate student Kendall Butner, a second-year graduate student, was happy to get the job.

Butner recently moved to Virginia to attend graduate school and to set up a home with his fiance and their new daughter.

"I accepted the position both because I believe in the value he brings to his customers and because I wanted an opportunity to apply what I've learned toward helping folks in my community," Butner said.

He said he gets first-hand business experience out of the relationship.

He said he loves Williamsburg and would like to stay here and sees his role as handling the details, allowing Aguirre to spend time with customers.

"Many of our clients known him by name and have a relationship with him nourished over the years AC Masters has been in business, Butner said.

The business has been recognized by Angie's List for maintaining a superior level of service six years in a row.

Business notes:

•A local company did well at the Second Annual Hampton Roads Excellence in Construction Award ceremonies. Henderson, Inc., of Williamsburg, won an award for the Kingsmill Resort Spa & Fitness Center Renovation.

•Earlier this month, Mayor Clyde Haulman presented the 2015 Mayor's Beautification Awards. Recipients are groups and/or individuals who contribute to Williamsburg through beautifying or improving the community environment. The categories and recipients are: Business – Figaro Hair Studio, 104 Westover Ave., Individual – Cary Carson, 308 Griffin Ave., Institutions or neighborhoods – City of Williamsburg Landscape Division, Commercial Renovation – Daily Donut, 1425 Richmond Road, Non-Commercial Renovation – Bruton Parish Rectory, 314 Prince George St., Residential Renovation – Gil Granger, G-Square, Inc., 520 Jamestown Road.

• Golf.com has named the Williamsburg Inn/Golden Horseshoe Golf Club and the Williamsburg destination to its inaugural golfer's choice awards. The Williamsburg Inn was listed as fifth on the list of top 10 golf destinations for families and seventh on the list of top 10 favorite U.S. golf destinations. The Williamsburg area was named third on the list of favorite U.S. golf destinations and tenth on the list of top destinations for value. The survey was completed by readers of Golf.com, SI Golf+ and SI Golf + Digital from Dec. 18, 2014 to Feb. 6 and administered by Marketing & Research Resources Inc., based in Frederick, Md. Participants were asked to rate only destinations and resorts they had visited in the previous three years. Domestic destinations and resorts needed to receive a minimum of 100 ratings to qualify for ranking. The number of surveys completed was 5,649. The Golden Horseshoe is set in a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary on gently rolling terrain surrounded by Virginia hardwoods and no encroaching residential development. The classic Gold Course, designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr. more than 50 years ago, is steps away from Colonial Williamsburg's Historic Area. The adjacent Green Course, designed by his son Rees Jones 25 years ago, represent the first father-son layout in the country. Jones Senior also designed the popular executive length Spotswood Course.

Vaughan can be reached at (757)345-2343.

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