The plain-spoken, colourful owner of MountainView Park Ltd. in Clarke's Beach is this year's winner of the CBDC Trinity Conception Business Distinction Award.
Ernie Mugford was presented with the award during the annual general meeting of CBDC Trinity Conception on Oct. 22.
CBDC Trinity Conception has been honouring local entrepreneurs with this award since 2007. The award recognizes contributions to the economy, job market and the community at large. Some of the criteria considered by a selection committee includes operating success, sales, future growth and contribution to local and provincial economy.
Owning and operating a park of some sort has been a lifetime dream for Mugford. He purchased a block of land in the town in 1968, and began developing his dream in 1990.
After 26 years in the Canadian Forces, Mugford retired in 1993 to work full-time at the park, which has now grown to offer 150 fully-serviced RV campsites.
“Over the years I’ve had many struggles from various sources," Mugford stated during the presentation ceremony, "but I have overcome them all mainly with the help of strangers, my family, my campers and the CBDC, who I will be indebted to for their help for the rest of my life."
The 2012 winner was Aaron Hillier, owner of Hillier's Garage in Green's Harbour, while the 2011 award went to Paul Colbert, part owner of two pharmacies — Tri-Con Pharmacy in Old Perlican and Western Bay Prescription Centre, and former owner of Colbert's Retirement Centre Limited in Old Perlican.
CBDC is an acronym for Community Business Development Corporation, and there are 15 in this province. The corporations promote economic development through business loans, counselling and training. The loans are used to either start or grow a company in the 72 communities served by CBDC Trinity Conception.
Meanwhile, CBDC Trinity Conception also introduced a new board executive and directors. They include the following: Anthony Smith (chair), Ray Tuck (vice-chair), Charlene Strickland (secretary), Danielle Doyle (treasurer), Charles Adams (past-chair), and directors Stan Reid, Barbara Brown, David Murrin and Gary Myrden.