We are pleased to announce that three Greater Reading companies made this year’s Governor’s ImPAct Awards list of finalists. Governor Tom Corbett, the Department of governors awardsCommunity & Economic Development (DCED) and The Team Pennsylvania Foundation (Team PA) designed this awards program to celebrate the companies and individuals who are investing in Pennsylvania and creating jobs.  The awards focus on five categories:

  1. Community Impact
  2. Entrepreneur Impact
  3. Export Impact
  4. Jobs First
  5. Small Business Impact


Community ImPAct Finalist: This award is given to a company that exemplifies the tenet of “doing well by doing good.” The winners in this category show a sustained commitment to the growth and development of its employees and the community(ies) in which it does business.

VF Outlet Center, a division of VF Corp was founded in 1972.  The company currently has 80 locations throughout the United States offering a wide assortment of iconic American brands.  VF Outlet Center has continued play an important role in the Greater Reading community.  In addition to their direct contribution to the local economy by way of jobs, VF Outlet has always played a leadership role while setting a standard for community involvement. As an organization, they are firmly entrenched in the fabric of the community within which we operate, whether it’s through their unwavering support of multiple community organizations or economic development.

Jobs First Finalist: This award is given to a company that has demonstrated consistent job growth and retention over the past two years. The company must have had a positive net gain in new jobs during this time period.

East Penn Manufacturing Co., Inc., manufactures batteries and battery accessories for the automotive, commercial, marine, industrial, stationary and specialty markets.  Over the past two years the Greater Reading based company has added 558 full-time employees to their existing 850+ employees.  The company continuously provides opportunities for advancement and professional development to employees.

East Penn has continued to grow based on their commitment to building relationships with new and existing customers to help them grow and win in their markets. In addition to providing high-quality existing products, it continuously innovates to offer new products.  As an industry leader and innovator the company is committed to environmental sustainability including recycling all products, water, and raw materials.

Small Business Impact Finalist: This award is given to a small business that has been an innovator within its industry, demonstrated revenue/profit growth, increased its workforce and committed to the growth and development of its employees and community. The company must have 100 or fewer employees.

Appeeling Fruit, Inc., pioneered the pre-sliced apple snack package with extended 21 day shelf life.  The extended shelf life allows for shipment and distribution throughout the East Coast.  Appeeling Fruit, Inc. started 22 years ago with four employees and 5,000 square feet of leased space.  In 2009 the company purchased a 23,000 square foot facility and now employs 52 people.  The company continues to focus on continued growth and innovation.

We are fortunate to have companies committed the success and growth of the Greater Reading community.  Several Greater Reading companies were nominated in various categories in partnership with the Greater Berks Development Fund, the Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Reading Economic Partnership and the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of North East PA.

Awards will be presented over a luncheon to the winners of each category on Friday, May 30 at the Hershey Lodge.