LYNDON CENTER -- Lyndon State College has named Jeremy Haskins the 2014 Outstanding Young Alumni. Haskins graduated from LSC in 2004 with a Business Administration degree with a minor in Marketing.
Haskins, with his parents and sister, purchased the only hardware store in Bellows Falls, Vt., in 2007. They retained the five employees and added more. In three years, he took the store, now named J & H Hardware, from 25 customers a day to 200 customers a day and hit yearly sales of $1 million. He doubled inventory, added services, and made the store a destination for local contractors and residents.
Six months after purchasing the retail hardware store, Haskins, his sister, and parents purchased the building housing the store. This building, a centerpiece of downtown Bellows Falls, is half a block and houses 24 commercial tenants including eight storefronts. Under Jeremy's leadership, the family business expanded to include sporting goods, dry cleaning, and other services. The store's footprint has increased to 12,000 square feet. The family is active in the Bellows Falls Development Alliance.
In 2011, Haskins was named North American Retail Hardware Association Young Retailer of the Year. Two years later, J & H Hardware was selected by Home Channel News as the 2013 best performing hardware store in Vermont. Home Channel News supplies news and analysis for the Home Improvement Building Material Industry.
Retired Professor of Business Linda Mitchel presented the award to Haskins at a ceremony held Oct. 28 on the Lyndon campus. Haskins and his wife Susan have two children.