Networking & Special Events

Business Awards Luncheon

May 1, 2024

Since 1988 the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce has been recognizing excellence in business with our annual Business Awards Luncheon. Over 85 different businesses and professionals have received recognition at these awards. We take pride in honoring the success of Greater St. Cloud organizations.



Jeremy and Emily Salzbrun, H&S Heating, A/C, Electrical and Plumbing

Jeremy And Emily Salzbrun Hs Heating Ac Electrical And Plumbing
Jeremy and Emily Salzbrun, H&S Heating, AC, Electrical and Plumbing

Jeremy Salzbrun can’t remember a time when he wasn’t working in the HVAC industry. His father Dan Salzbrun and business partner Dennis Harren started H&S Welding, Heating and Air Conditioning in 1989. As a child, Jeremy started sweeping floors and organizing tools at H&S. At 14 years old, he earned his first actual paycheck. At age 25, he got his master HVAC license. “Honestly, I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t started at such a young age,” Jeremy said.

Emily Salzbrun grew up on the same school bus route as Jeremy, on a hobby farm. After they both graduated high school, Emily went on to St. Cloud State University to get a degree in biology. She spent time commuting to jobs in various biology fields before deciding to stay closer to home. In 2010, she joined Jeremy working at H&S, filling an open secretary position.

Jeremy and Emily purchased H&S Heating, A/C, Electrical and Plumbing from Jeremy’s parents in 2012. In 2014, they moved from a small garage in Luxemburg to a 1,092 square foot building in St. Cloud. Since then, they have made two additions to the building, one in 2019 and the other in 2023. The business now occupies a total of 14,000 square feet, and the only way they could add on more was by acquiring other businesses. So, they did.

In 2022, H&S added electrical to their service line with the purchase of Valley View Electric, now H&S Electrical. In 2023, plumbing came onboard with the addition of Jensen Andersen Plumbing and Heating, a 67-year-old business in Milaca. The Salzbruns continue to run this company under its original name.

The H&S in the company’s name stands for happy and satisfied, and that is what the Salzbruns aim for every day. All the duct work done by H&S is custom fabricated to the customers’ needs. They offer 24/7 service in case of emergencies. They recently added a new product line called Gemstone Permanent Architectural & Holiday Lighting. They are a RUUD Pro Partner from their equipment manufacturer, and a 2017 recipient of the Habitat for Humanity Partner of the Year award. “The more business we do, the more we can give back,” Jeremy said. They have donated HVAC systems to area schools and churches, and Jeremy raised $75,500 for The Beautiful Mind Project through the Central Minnesota Community Foundation’s fundraiser Dancing with our Stars.

When Jeremy and Emily purchased the company in 2012, there were five employees on the payroll, five trucks in the fleet, and less than 1,000 square feet of production space. Today, there are 32 employees under all their businesses, 25 vehicles in their fleet, and their facility covers over 14,000 square feet. They have shown consistent growth and innovation, and give back with open hearts to the Central Minnesota Community. All of this has earned H&S Heating, A/C, Electrical and Plumbing the prestigious distinction of the 2024 St. Cloud Area Small Business Owners of the Year award by the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce.


women in business champion

Jill Magelssen, Express Employment Professionals

Jill Magelssen Express Employment Professionals
Jill Magelssen, Express Employment Professionals

After serving nearly two decades in corporate staffing, Jill Magelssen knew it was time for a change. She had seen firsthand how decisions were made by top-level management and how the people in the trenches ended up paying the price. “I felt like I had no control over trying to make the people who did the work every day feel like they made a difference,” Magelssen said. So, she set out to make a difference in the lives of others.

Encouraged by her husband who also owns a business, Magelssen jumped on the opportunity to purchase a resale of an Express Employment Professionals franchise in St. Cloud, MN in 2005. At the time, the office had two temporary employees on staff, which presented the opportunity to start from the ground up.

Today, Express has 6 full time employees and one part-time employee, and Magelssen often partners with local colleges to bring in interns. At any given time, Express has between 50 and 400 associates in the Central Minnesota workforce. They are able to accommodate many needs, including staffing for special events and fourth quarter surges in demand. They provide staff in temporary office roles, skilled trades, industrial and professional positions with a specialized recruiter.

As a franchise, Express Employment Professionals has given Magelssen a lot of opportunities for growth through her ownership. She attended the Express Leadership Academy, which was instrumental in the development of her own internal culture. Magelssen’s office was awarded the Express Circle of Excellence award six times for their performance. The franchise also provides access to the latest trends in staffing, and even helped her office donate $10,000 to local charities. This aligns deeply with Magelssen’s values. “I believe in giving back in a big way,” she said.

Magelssen is a member of the St. Cloud Rotary and chair of the Summertime by George committee. She has been a longtime member of the Central MN Council of Boy Scouts board and served as the first female board chair. She serves on the Career Solutions board, St. Cloud State Herberger Business School Advisory Council and with the Forum of Executive Women. She has held many volunteer roles with the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce, and she is the event organizer of Dinner with Santa, a senior citizen event hosted annually. She encourages her staff to volunteer as well. “If we don’t get out to see what the community needs, we can’t be as valuable a resource to the community,” she said.

As an expert in the human resources industry in Central Minnesota, Magelssen impacts the people around her every day. She leads by example, giving graciously of her time and talent and empowering her staff and associates to work hard, care about others, and build each other up. All of this plus her commitment to the community has earned her the 2024 Business Central Mark of Excellence – Women in Business Champion award by the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce.

2024 Family-Owned Business

Jim, Andy & Dave Jacobs, Jacobs Financial

Andy L Jim And Dave Jacobs Jacobs Financial
Andy (L), Jim and Dave Jacobs, Jacobs Financial

For over 50 years, Jacobs Financial has been helping professionals and families in Minnesota with all their financial planning needs. David Willmore, father-in-law of Jim Jacobs, started selling insurance in the 1960s. In 1973, David and Jim partnered to form Jacobs, Willmore & Associates. Originally located in Bloomington, MN, the firm moved to St. Cloud in 1979. Willmore passed away in 1992 and Jim took over full ownership of the firm, renaming it The Jacobs Agency.

Dave Jacobs attended St. Cloud State University and joined Jacobs Financial right after graduating in 2002. Andy Jacobs graduated from St. Cloud State University in 1996 and joined the firm in 2003. In 2007, Jacobs Financial relocated to their current location, a larger office space which allowed them to sublet offices to complimentary industries, such as real estate agents and mortgage lenders. At the time, there were just five people on staff.

The Jacobs fully embrace growth and change in their business approach. “None of the products we sold 40 years ago even exist anymore,” Jim said. In 2014, Jacobs Financial hired its first financial advisor to support its growth. As of 2020, Andy and Dave are the sole owners of Jacobs Financial, while Jim is still a key part of the management team. Jacobs Financial is planning future expansions to satellite offices in the Brainerd and Maple Grove areas. Today there are 7 advisors and 7 support staff at Jacobs Financial, and they are expecting to add several additional advisors this year. The team assists with financial planning at every stage of life, from starting out to enjoying retirement. They work with both personal and business clients, investment management, comprehensive financial planning, retirement 401(k) plan design and management, insurance, and more.

In light of significant growth over the last decade, the Jacobs have remained steadfast in their core values. “Our guiding principle is simple, really,” Andy said. “We work together to do the right thing – for our clients, our employees, and our community.” For 18 consecutive years, they’ve organized and sponsored the Swing Fore Charity Golf Event, channeling efforts to benefit organizations such as The Greater St. Cloud Public Safety Foundation and Central MN Habitat for Humanity, raising over $470,000.  Jacobs Financial has been a valuable supporter to many other organizations including Kiwanis, Kids Fighting Hunger, Junior Achievement, St. Cloud Area Family YMCA, Anna Marie’s Alliance, and area youth sports to name a few. “I believe that’s what we’re supposed to do with life – use our gifts to bless other people,” Jim said.

A St. Cloud family that has grown a successful St. Cloud business, the Jacobs have been a part of the fabric of the community for over 50 years. They attribute the firm’s success largely to the people who have helped along the way. “We know we would not have been successful if it weren’t for the support of our families, clients and employees,” Dave said. “For that, we are very grateful.” At Jacobs Financial, you don’t have to share a last name to be family. Their consistent growth and dedication to their clients and the community has earned them the 2024 Family-Owned Business of the Year Award from the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce.


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