Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

February 1, 2023
Tooele County Chamber of Commerce gives out awards

Chris Sloan recognized as Citizen of the Year 

Members of the Tooele County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism along with other community members gathered at Tooele High School on Friday evening, Jan. 27 to give out awards and install the Chamber’s 2023 officers and board members.

Chris Sloan, broker/owner of Group 1 Real Estate was recognized as the Tooele County Chamber of Commerce’s Citizen of the Year. This award recognizes an individual for their accomplishments in their employment, and/or civic — city, county, state —  or  other voluntary service.

Sloan has taken time away from working in his company to serve on the Tooele City planning and zoning commission for 11 years. He wants the city to stand out as the best city in Utah for businesses to do business and a place that families are proud to call home. When Sloan isn’t working in the city, he is sure to be found on Utah’s Capitol Hill trying to advance issues for Tooele County and its cities. Sloan has served on the board of directors for the National  Association of Realtors since 2009 where he fights for Utah state to be heard nationally. 

Chris also serves as the liaison for the NAR to the office of Congressman Chris Stewart. 

In his spare time, Chris enjoys motorcycle rides or a drive in one of his very, very fast cars. 

The Chamber honored Khosrow Semnani, the founder of Envirocare — now known as Energy Solutions — with their Lifetime Achievement Award.

Semnani is an Iranian-American industrialist, community leader, and philanthropist based in Salt Lake City.

He was born in 1947 in Iran, studied English in England in 1966, and traveled to the United States. He eventually arrived in Salt Lake City and graduated from Westminster College with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical Sciences in 1972. He received a Master of Engineering Administration degree from the University of Utah in 1975.

Semnani began his career as a research scientist at Kennecott Copper Corporation. He also worked as a plant engineer for Thatcher Chemical Company, and then as an engineering manager at Sperry Univac, later Unisys.

Using his expertise in physics and industry management, Semnani started Utah’s first hazardous waste disposal facility at Grassy Mountain. After he sold that facility, he founded Envirocare in 1988. Envirocare was the first privately-owned low-level nuclear waste disposal facility in the United States. In 2004, after 16 years of growth and profitability, he sold the company, which later became EnergySolutions. 

Through his company, S. K. Hart Management, he manages a diversified global investment portfolio. To share their good fortune with others, Semnani, with his wife, Ghazaleh, founded the Semnani Family Foundation in 1993. The foundation works with a wide variety of organizations to provide humanitarian relief across the globe. The foundation also founded the Maliheh Free Clinic in 2005 to provide free healthcare to thousands of uninsured poor people in the Salt Lake City area.

Semnani founded Omid for Iran in 2009 to encourage policies that protected the people of Iran and promoted their liberty. He wrote “The Ayatollah’s Nuclear Gamble: The Human Cost of Military Strikes Against Iran’s Nuclear Facilities,” published in 2012 in partnership with the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. In October 2018, he published “Where Is My Oil? Corruption in Iran’s Oil and Gas Sector,” also in partnership with the Hinckley Institute.

Semnani lives in Salt Lake City with his wife and three sons.

Bishop Dental received the Customer Service of the Year Award.

Bishop Dental came to Tooele County in 2014. Dr. John Bishop, DMD, Dr. Curtis Sampson, DDS and Dr. Bradley Patch, DDS are the resident dentists at Bishop Dental. 

One nomination for Bishop Dental for this award read:

“When I walked in I saw all the front employees with kind smiles and I thought what a fake. When I started to explain my situation they were truly sincere in their kindness and gave me an opportunity to be heard which is very different from just listening to me. 

“I was able to get in to see Dr. Bishop, and found that even the doctor was kind, he asked if I like the music that was playing — who does that? 

“ My son would not go to the dentist at all, after bribing him to go to Bishop Dental there is no more hesitation for him to go now. I had to drop him off early one time and asked ‘Can I take you early?’ knowing it might be a fight. He said, “Sure,. I like talking to the staff there, they’re nice.”

The Business of the Year Award went to American Burgers, owned by brothers Angelo and Toro Geovjian along with Toro’s wife, Mary Manusakis Geovjian.

Jared Hamner, chamber executive director, read from the nomination: “A young 5-year-old girl in Armenia watched in 1919 in horror as all her family was killed in the Armenia and Turkey war. A young Turkish soldier took mercy on this little girl and put her in her saddlebag, because of her survival her grandson, Angelo Geovjian, came to Tooele and along with Toro & Mary started American Burgers in 2000 after acquiring the old Kentucky Fried Chicken building.”

Now they have 3 three American Burgers places — Tooele, Grantsville and Herriman — with the philosophy that no one goes hungry. Extending trust to those that may have forgotten their wallet or money and feeding them on the promise to be paid later. Today they are looking into franchising American Burger.

American Burgers has sponsored many community events, sports teams and activities for the betterment of Tooele County. The owners have served on boards in their community.

Ron Baum was the Chamber’s Volunteer of the Year.

Baum’s list of volunteer service is exhausting. He has served for 39 years with the Tooele City Volunteer Fire Department where he has been the chairman over school and public fire prevention programs. He has headed up the fire department’s Fill the Boot Campaign.

Baum coached Babe Ruth and Cal Ripkin baseball programs for 30 years. He was a Junior Jazz coach for eight years and volunteered as a football coach in the Tooele County youth program. For over 35 years Baum served as a board member and chairman of the Tooele County Fair.

Baum’s list of volunteering goes on with 20 years as DJ and MC for the Children’s Justice Center Black Tie and Blue Jeans event. He also has provided music and has been the MC for other events like Kicking Cancer’s Can and the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. He has provided music for the Pathway Domestic Violence Center’s event in Tooele City and has supported Bikers Against Child Abuse with sound equipment.

The Chamber of Commerce’s Ambassador of the Year was Stacey Bice, life coach.

Bice is not only a life coach, she is also an organizational specialist — helping people organize their homes and lives — and a Reiki energy healer master/teacher. Bice has been a life coach since 2012. She joined the Chamber of Commerce in 2020 as she started her life coaching business, Ignite the Positive!, full time. 

Bice has been the chairperson of the Chamber’s All Women in Business since 2022 and the Chamber’s representative to the Local Business Networking International Group. She belongs to the Ladies Community Club of Tooele.

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