The Board of Directors for the North Little Rock Chamber of Commerce recently named Union Pacific of Arkansas as the Business of the Year and Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County as the Non-Profit Partner of the Year for 2013. The awards are designed to recognize the dedication, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit displayed by businesses in our community. The winners will be recognized during the Chamber’s monthly F.Y.I. Membership Luncheon & Chairman’s Awards on Friday, Dec. 6 and also at the 29th Annual Banquet in 2014.

The finalists for the 2013 Business & Non-Profit Partner of the Year Awards also included the following Chamber member businesses:

Business of the Year Nominees


Mainstream Technologies, Inc.

Moe’s Southwest Grill

The Hatcher Agency

Non-Profit Partner of the Year Nominees

Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum

Hearts & Hooves

North Little Rock School District

United Cerebral Palsy

Union Pacific of Arkansas

Union Pacific is Arkansas’ largest railroad, serving the food processing, forest products and poultry industries. Major commodities hauled by Union Pacific include soy beans, cotton, rice bauxite, manganese and glass. In addition, the railroad is a vital link for western coal used by local electrical generating plants.

Union Pacific’s operational hub in Arkansas is in North Little Rock, where the railroad operates the Downing B. Jenks locomotive repair shop - the largest and most modern on the system. The Jenks Shop locomotive complex employs more than 1,100 skilled and dedicated workers, who perform heavy maintenance on a fleet of 7,000 locomotives that pull more than 2,000 trains each day throughout the western two-thirds of the United States. North Little Rock is also home to Union Pacific’s second-largest freight car classification yard.

Beyond North Little Rock, Union Pacific operates a $70 million state-of-the-art, 600-acre intermodal facility at Marion (10 miles west of Memphis) and a classification yard at Pine Bluff.

Amtrak operates passenger train service over Union Pacific’s main line through Arkansas, connecting St. Louis and Texas.

Union Pacific invested more than $567 million in Arkansas transportation infrastructure from 2007 to 2012.

In 2012, Union Pacific provided support to 61 Arkansas charitable organizations such as the American Heart Association, the Arkansas Arts Center Foundation and the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Foundation. These organizations were reached through a combination of the Union Pacific Foundation, matching gifts and corporate contributions. The Union Pacific Foundation is the primary philanthropic arm of Union Pacific Corporation and has distributed funds since 1959 to qualified organizations in communities served by Union Pacific.

Union Pacific is located at 800 Pike Ave. in North Little Rock. For more information, visit or call (501) 373-2882.

Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County

Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County (Habitat), an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, built its first home in Little Rock in 1990. To date, over 100 families in Pulaski County and 30 internationally owned homes have been built and financed with Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County.

Habitat is an ecumenical Christian housing ministry whose mission is to put God’s love into action by bringing people to build homes, communities and hope. We consider our work a ministry and we work exclusively with qualified low-income families in need by building and selling safe, decent and affordable homes to give a hand up to needy families so they may realize the dream of homeownership and grow into all that God intended.

Habitat is unique in its mission: we serve as the both the bank and builder for our families. Each family endures a rigorous application process where credit is screened and income to service the mortgage is verified. Additionally, all families are asked to partner with us by providing at least 250 "sweat equity" hours toward the building of their home, another family’s home or in our ReStores.

Zero-interest mortgages are given to each Habitat family and payments are received monthly. All payments are placed into a revolving "Fund for Humanity," these funds are used to build additional homes for deserving families in the program.

In 2006, we opened our first ReStore in North Little Rock. ReStores’ serve as a sustainability arm to the organization by taking donations of new and gently used furniture, appliances and building supplies from individuals and corporate donors and which are then sold to the public at reduced prices.

All revenue from our North Little Rock store is allocated to support our overhead expenses. Therefore, each dollar received from community donations goes directly to building a house for a low-income family in need.

In 2011, it opened a second ReStore location in Little Rock. Revenue received from this store will allow us to serve more families in need throughout Pulaski County.

Like the housing program, the ReStores are a ministry within themselves because they offer the budget-friendly shopper the opportunity to remodel their home with quality items and building supplies with reduced prices.

To date, it has built the dreams and changed the lives of over 110 families in Pulaski County and over 400 tons of materials have been kept out of our landfills because of the ReStores. Habitat is its proud of its impact in Pulaski County and look forward to serving more families at home and abroad.

Habitat for Humanity of Pulaski County is located at 6700 South University in Little Rock. For more information, visit or call (501) 376-4434.