Two Michigan jewelers recognized for community service

Tapper’s Diamonds and Fine Jewelry, West Bloomfield, Michigan, and Cooper & Binkley Jewelers, Brighton, Michigan, were honored by the Michigan Retailers Association for their community service.

Tapper’s was one of three retailers to receive the 2002 Michigan Retailer of the Year award. Tappers was recognized as the best in the “medium” category by marking its 25th anniversary this year with a creative “Give $25 … Get $25” promotion to encourage customers to contribute to one of 26 local charities.

Customers receive a $25 Tapper’s gift certificate in return for donating a minimum of $25 to charities selected by Tapper’s, such as Midwest AIDS Prevention Program, Children’s Leukemia Foundation of Michigan and the Sickle Cell Disease Association. From its inception in April through mid-August, the program raised $11,000, with many more dollars expected the rest of the year. Tapper’s also sponsors a successful winter coat drive and has been active with the Kids Kicking Cancer organization.

Cooper & Binkley was recognized for its longstanding work with The Arc of Livingston, an agency serving persons with developmental disabilities, and for its sponsorship of both a jump-rope program at Lindbom Elementary and the Brighton Bouncing Bulldogs, a U.S. Amateur Jump Rope Federation team. The Binkleys also sponsor other youth programs that benefit local elementary schools and are leaders in several community organizations. Mark Binkley, is president of the jewelry operation and Barbara Binkley serves as vice president.

The awards were announced by the Michigan Retailers Association, which founded and sponsors the wards program. They are normally given to retail stores in three categories: small, medium, and large. This is the first year they decided to name a “finalist,” in the small category based on the large number of outstanding candidates, the Michigan Retailers Association said in a statement.

“The Retailer of the Year Awards honor the best of the best,” said Larry Meyer, chairman and CEO of the Michigan Retailers Association. “Those honored are representative of the thousands of retailers across the state who are enhancing the quality of life in their communities through countless charitable and volunteer activities.”

The awards were presented at the 5th annual Michigan Retailer of the Year Awards luncheon will be held Tuesday, Oct. 15, at Michigan State University’s James B. Henry Center for Executive Development in Lansing.

The Michigan Retailers Association bills itself as the nation’s largest state trade association of general merchandise retailers with more than 5,800 retail business members that operate more than 13,000 stores across the state.