Cordia Harrington, founder, CEO and president of The Bun Companies, was recently awarded the prestigious Beta Gamma Sigma Medallion for Entrepreneurship. In a ceremony held on campus yesterday, Dr. George Stevens, past president and current board member of Beta Gamma Sigma, made a personal visit to present Harrington with the honor during the annual Belmont University Center for Entrepreneurship Student Awards Banquet.
The Medallion for Entrepreneurship has been awarded annually by international honor society Beta Gamma Sigma since 1994. The award was established to recognize individuals and firms who contribute significantly to the vitality and strength of the economy, combining innovative business achievement with service to humanity. Mrs. Harrington, affectionately known as “The Bun Lady,” was nominated by Belmont University’s College of Business Administration (COBA). She is one of four recipients of the award this year. The other 2012 honorees are David Director, president of Connecticut Lighting Centers; John R. Post, founder and president of Post Precision Castings, Inc.; and Steve Weiss, chairman and CEO of Coachella Valley Angel Network.
James Viehland, executive director of Beta Gamma Sigma, said, “The selection committee was very impressed with her achievements as they were presented in the nomination and supporting materials.”
Dr. Pat Raines, dean of Belmont’s College of Business Administration, added, “Mrs. Harrington embodies the entrepreneurial spirit, and we are proud she has chosen to establish strong ties with the University and the College of Business Administration.”
The Tennessee Bun Company (TBC) supplies buns to restaurants such as McDonald’s, Chili’s and Pepperidge Farm. TBC is one of the most highly automated bakeries in the world, producing 1,000 buns per minute and ships to 40 states east of the Rockies and to the Caribbean. In 1999, Mrs. Harrington opened Nashville Bun Company (NBC), a producer of English muffins for McDonald’s, Sheetz, Perkins, and others and founded the Bun Lady Transport in 1999, to provide reliable transportation services for TBC products. She added a Hearth line to NBC in 2005 to supply McDonald’s and O’Charley’s and purchased the Cold Storage of Nashville freezer facility. The newest member of The Bun Companies family is CornerStone Baking Company. Founded in 2007, CBC produces frozen dough pieces for several well-known casual dining restaurants.
Mrs. Harrington serves on the Belmont University Board of Trustees. Her dedication to Belmont, the College of Business Administration and its students is apparent. Harrington established the Bun Lady Scholarship which is awarded annually to entrepreneurship undergraduate or graduate students who are participating in Belmont’s study abroad programs. Additionally, Harrington is a frequent guest speaker in both graduate and undergraduate entrepreneurship classes.
An active member of the community, Harrington is a member of the Minnie Pearl Cancer Foundation, Leadership Nashville, Committee of 200, Chi Omega Foundation, the St. Thomas Health Services Fund and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Board. She also supports over 18 Ronald McDonald Houses in the USA as well as the Bethel Orphanage in China.
About Beta Gamma Sigma
Beta Gamma Sigma is the international honor society serving business programs accredited by AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Membership in Beta Gamma Sigma is the highest recognition a business student anywhere in the world can receive in a business program accredited by AACSB International.