SHELBY — Angela Phillips couldn’t walk 10 feet without someone new congratulating her last week.
The CEO of Phillips Tube Group returned to her hometown in Shelby for her father’s memorial golf outing between celebrations of her business influence in Columbus and Dayton.
“It was a great night, and I don’t think I’ve processed it yet,” Phillips said after she won the Ernst & Young (EY) Entrepreneur Of The Year award June 14.
The PTG leadership team and Phillips’ family members made up a cheering section of almost 20 people at the awards ceremony.
“The coordinator for the event said they put us last because she knew they would make a lot of noise and go out with a bang,” she said. “There were some phenomenal companies represented there, and I was honestly surprised we ended up winning in the end.”
Phillips’ banker, Chris Belletti of PNC Bank, nominated her for the Entrepreneur Of The Year award. After the nomination, PTG gathered multiple documents about the company and a panel of judges visited the facility for an on-site interview.
Phillips was named a finalist for the award in April for the East Central region (Kentucky, Northeast & South Central Ohio, Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia). Judges were looking for entrepreneurs or leaders of high-growth companies that exhibited resilience, innovation, social responsibility and overall business success.
There were 27 East Central award finalists who completed interviews in May. Seven walked away with the honor at the June 14 ceremony. Phillips said Phillips Tube Group was one of two women-owned businesses that won.
“I don’t think it’s about the entrepreneur, it’s a credit to the people around me,” Phillips said. “Entrepreneurs are visionaries, but someone has to carry those ideas forward, and that’s where the team comes in.”
Catherine Martin, PTG vice president of marketing and communications, has known Phillips since they were classmates at Hiram College.
“She loves to deflect, but it’s about her — she’s the leader,” Martin said. “But I will say all the winners talked about how important their team was to their success.”
With plants in Middletown, Shelby, and Richmond Indiana, PTG employs nearly 250 team members. Its products are found in automobiles, furnaces, dishwashers, recreational vehicles, appliances and more.
Angela Phillips has been the CEO of Phillips Tube Group since 2009 after the death of her father and the business’ founder, Ralph Phillips.
“When dad passed away, we were in a stressful situation already, and of course, 2009 was also during the recession,” she said. “But we budgeted and made it through, and now we’ve more than doubled the business and built out our infrastructure.”
Phillips, who lives in Middletown, was also chosen a Top 5 Woman of Influence in the Dayton region at the Dayton Business Journal’s BizWomen Power 50 event on June 15.
“I’m so proud of all the recognition and credit my entire team for the success of Phillips Tube Group,” Phillips said. “This is about all of us.”
The East Central regional award winners will be considered by national judges before the national awards in November at the annual Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs. National winners will then move on to the World Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in June 2024.
A.J. Jordan, EY Americas Entrepreneur Of The Year program director, said the regional award winners represent a variety of “change-makers and champions of business and community.”
“Every year, we are completely blown away by the accomplishments of our Entrepreneur Of The Year Regional Award winners, and 2023 is no different,” he said. “We are so proud to be honoring them.
“We can’t wait to see how these leaders will continue to improve lives and disrupt industries.”
Founded and produced by Ernst & Young LLP, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards include presenting sponsors PNC Bank, N.A.; SAP America; and the Kauffman Foundation. In the East Central region, sponsors also include Valuation Research Corporation, Donnelley Financial Solutions, and Frost Brown Todd LLC.