Chandler, Rizer honored for business accomplishments, service to community

Mar. 6—Bob Chandler, a former executive vice president of Shaw Industries' commercial business division, said he was "shocked" when he was told he was one of the 2023 inductees into the Junior Achievement of Northwest Georgia Business Hall of Fame.

"It's a great honor," he said. "I've been a supporter of Junior Achievement for many years. I've attended a lot of these events. My father (I.V. Chandler, one of the founders of Patcraft Mills that eventually became a part of Shaw Industries) was inducted into the Hall of Fame about 10 years ago. He was a big supporter of Junior Achievement as well. There are a lot of other people I know and respect in there, so I'm very honored to be there, too."

Chandler is chairman of the board of Hamilton Medical Center and vice chairman of the board of Hamilton Health Care System.

Junior Achievement of Northwest Georgia provides programs in financial literacy and entrepreneurship for more than 6,000 students across Northwest Georgia.

The induction ceremony and banquet was Thursday at the Dalton Convention Center.

"We are excited," said Junior Achievement of Northwest Georgia Director Anna Adamson. "This is the largest crowd we have had for our Hall of Fame banquet in our 17 years. All of the proceeds we raise will go to our Junior Achievement programs. Thanks to our JA Discovery Center, we are running programs for students across Northwest Georgia. We've opened 3DE at The Dalton Academy. We have 150 ninth-graders who have embarked on many case challenges this year with local and national partners. It has been a fantastic year."

The Junior Achievement Discovery Center of Greater Dalton, which opened two years ago on the campus of Hammond Creek Middle School, provides middle school students with experiences in prototypes of local businesses and allows the students to meet volunteers who share their real-world knowledge and perspective.

The 3DE program integrates student projects and case studies into school curriculum.

Adamson said that even after 17 years it isn't hard to find business leaders in the Northwest Georgia area who deserve to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

"We've got a new generation coming up," she said. "We have such great people doing great things."

Brooks Rizer, founder of Textile & Industrial Sales, was also inducted into the Hall of Fame on Thursday.

"I was a little surprised, but it's a great honor," Rizer said. "It is great to be included in such a great group of people."

Rizer began donating blood while he served in the U.S. Navy and has donated more than 20 gallons of blood.

Landon Hair, chief operating officer for the Marketing Alliance Group, received the Rising Star award for individuals "far from finished with their career" who are making a positive impact on the community.

"It is such a great honor," Hair said. "And it is a great honor to be able to help Junior Achievement. They do such great work in our community, providing great services to students not only locally but across Northwest Georgia who come to the Junior Achievement Discovery Center. Our school systems do a great job, but Junior Achievement adds to that, and it's great to have it in our community."