Merchant of the Month
May Merchant of the Month
Stewart-Morris Awards, Gifts & Flags
The Madison Chamber of Commerce has selected Stewart-Morris Awards, Gifts & Flags as the winner of the Merchant of the Month award for May.
Located at 71 Kings Rd., Stewart-Morris is the place for “anyone who is interested in making a strong impact with engraved and imprinted products,”said co-owner John Morris. “We help our customers mark achievements, ceremonies and milestones with the appropriate products.” Their customers include businesses, governments, country clubs, non-profits and individuals.
Stewart-Morris was established in 1972 and is owned and operated by John Morris and Ginger Lein, who are brother and sister and second-generation owners of the firm.
Stewart-Morris specializes in awards, gifts and flags for both organizations and individuals. Awards include presentation plaques, crystal, pewter, medals and trophies. They also sell custom metal plaques, such as cast bronze and cast aluminum, for unique occasions.
“Plaques in several varieties are one of our bestsellers. So are the etched crystal and glass products, which make unique and long lasting awards and gifts,”said Morris.
The second category, gifts, include monogrammed barware, engraved pewter items like baby cups and personalized jewelry in sterling, pewter and acrylic along with embroidered items. They also provide Toss Designs bags and accessories.
“We also offer a wide range of promotional products,”said Ginger Lein. “We are a longtime distributor of promotional products, including imprinted pens, buttons, bags, tents, balloons and other giveaways. We work with suppliers nationwide so we have wide selection of customized merchandise to offer our customers.”
Flags, flagpoles and banners are their third specialty. Stewart-Morris sells U.S. flags in all sizes and several fabrics along with flagpoles for residential and commercial use. They are expert in custom imprinted nylon flags and banners.
“Due to recent technological advances, custom imprinted flags and banners are within easy reach for corporations, non-profits, sports teams and
Stewart-Morris can be found on a busy stretch of Kings Road between the Madison YMCA and the commuter parking lot. The brick building with new black shutters welcomes customers through their front door which is flanked by two planters. Out their front door is a red brick patio where they place a sandwich board and have two 20-foot flagpoles. A U.S. flag always flies on the white fiberglass pole. The flag flying on the aluminum pole is usually dictated by the current season, holiday or special event.
“During Memorial Day, we fly the Honor and Remember Flag. We also fly a custom Stewart-Morris flag from a six-foot pole that’s mounted to the brick façade,”said Morris. “On the side walk behind our parking lot, we fly three flags from 6-foot wall-mounted poles. The current flags there are the U.S., the Australian, and the official Madison Flag, which we helped design a few years back.”
Inside their large showroom their merchandising style is dictated by the needs of their customers. Their products are neatly arranged by vendor, category and style. An expansive wall with a rich blue background houses all crystal and glass and is subtly lit from above for easy viewing. All flag merchandise is in its own area of the showroom with custom flag and banner options on a table nearby. The center of the showroom houses racks of Toss Design bags and accessories which leads back to a glass front counter that houses many cast bronze and aluminum plaques and sample boards. Pewter products from several manufacturers are also shown in dedicated display cases.
“When customers visit, we want to show them their options and spend time meeting their needs,”said Lein. “Keeping things neat, clean and organized both inside and outside pays dividends for our customers. We’ve added new displays to the showroom and are constantly fine-tuning our production area by adding new technology and furniture and improving the effectiveness and efficiency of our work flow.”
The Merchant of the Month Award recognizes businesses for their contributions to keeping the Madison business district inviting and prosperous through the upkeep and design of their properties. The award program is administered by the Chamber and the Madison Downtown Development Commission. They alternate selections monthly.
Morris credits friendly customer service to encourage return visits from their customers. “Simply put, we’re here to help our customers.”
“We’re an independent, full-line retailer of awards, gifts and flags that has a local, easy to access storefront and showroom. A portion of our industry has to migrate to strictly on-line retailing, whether buy choice or necessity. In-person retailing allows us to serve our customers best and meet their needs. We computer engrave brass, aluminum and acrylic awards on-site. When you are working with Ginger or me, you’re working with an owner. Each of us has almost thirty years of experience in the business. We are a family business.”said Morris.
Stewart-Morris is the 74th Madison business to win the award. Winners receive an engraved blue brass plaque and the distinctive, blue Merchant of the Month banner that travels between stores. The entire list of winners since the establishment of the program in 2007 is posted at the Chamber’s website www.MadisonNJChamber.org.
Stewart-Morris, Awards, Gifts & Flags has been a Chamber member for many decades.
“Our father, Jack Morris, and his business partner at the time, joined the Chamber even before the Stewart-Morris grand opening in March 1972.”explain Lein.
“Both of them enjoyed being part of the community. The Madison Chamber was one of their most important vehicles to the local community and beyond, and it still is today.”said Morris. “They believed that a well-run Chamber of Commerce did so much good for its members and its town. The Madison Chamber opens doors to new ideas and great possibilities for its members. And that fact helps all Chamber members to serve their customer well.”
Both Lein and Morris give back to the community primarily through participation in the Madison Chamber of Commerce, the Rotary Club of Madison and the Taste of Madison. Morris is the Chamber’s president for 2014-2016. He also served in that position in 2008-2010 and 2010-2012.
“It’s wonderful to be part of such a caring, historic and beautiful community. We’re very fortunate to be here in Madison.”said both Morris and Lein.
Stewart-Morris Awards, Gifts & Flags can be reached at 973-822-2777 or StewartMorris@aol.com. Their website is Stewart-Morris.com.
The Madison Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit, independent business league that was founded in 1943. The Chamber’s mission is to support and promote its dues-paying members and to enhance the economic well being of Madison. The Chamber has almost 180 member businesses and non-profits
For additional information about the Chamber, contact 973-377-7830 or info@MadisonNJChamber.org. The Chamber’s website, which features an events calendar, a membership directory and other resources, is located at www.MadisonNJChamber.org
Merchant of the Month Award Recipients:
- Gerlachs Jewelers - May 2007.
- Coviello's - July 2007.
- T&J Service Center, Inc. - Aug 2007.
- J.M. Egan - Sept 2007.
- Blush - Nov 2007.
- Traditional Okinawan Martial Arts - Dec 2007.
- Madison Car Wash & Detail Center - Jan 2008.
- Top Notch - Feb 2008.
- Statements - March 2008.
- Empire Szechuan - April 2008.
- Rose City Jewelers - May 2008.
- European Elegance - June 2008.
- Town & Country Home - July 2008.
- Main Street Submarines - Sept 2008.
- Madison Bicycle Shop - Oct 2008.
- Wild Things - Nov 2008.
- J&M Home & Garden - Dec 2008.
- Madison Honda - Feb 2009.
- Resto - April 2009.
- Hollenbach Family Chiropractic - May 2009.
- Museum of Early Trades & Crafts - Aug 2009.
- Rose City Collision - Nov 2009.
- Cramers Carpet One - Dec 2009.
- The Chocolate Rose Shoppe - March 2010.
- Hey Cupcake! - Nov 2010.
- Creighton Edward – Dec 2010.
- Tons of Toys – Jan 2011.
- Maison Décor – Feb 2011.
- d torr boutique – April 2011.
- Schnipper’s – May 2011.
- Doddlebugz – June 2011.
- Plaza Lanes – July 2011.
- Somerset Hills Bank – Oct 2011.
- The Provident Bank – Nov 2011.
- Takuma – Dec 2011.
- Starting Line Sports – Feb 2012.
- Gary’s Wine & Marketplace – March 2012.
- Drip Coffee – April 2012.
- DownTown Salon – May 2012.
- PC Problems - June 2012.
- Coccia Realty - July 2012
- Blue Ridge Mountain Sports - August 2012
- Upholstery Plus - September 2012
- Poor Herbie's - October 2012
- Hair We Are - November 2012
- Madison Vaccum - December 2012
- The Blue Purl - January 2013
- The Nautilus Diner - February 2013
- Hilltop Community Bank - March 2013
- Salvatore Minardi Salon - April 2013
- Main Street Wine Cellars - May 2013
- Prima - June 2013
- July 2013
- August 2013
- Sprouts Consignment - September 2013
- Honor Tree Service - October 2013
- Madison Pet Shop - November 2013
- Erezuma Architect - December 2013
- San Francisco Mercantile - January 2014
- La Rosa Chicken & Grill - February 2014
- Madison Pharmacy - April 2014
- Madison Mane Salon - May 2014
- Rob's Bistro - June 2014
- Odell & Critchley - July 2014
- Dental Office of Dr. Allison Adams - August 2014
- La La Land - September 2014
- Wireless Zone - October 2014
- November 2014
- December 2014
- Waverly TV- January 2015
- Wireless Zone- February 2015
- Investors Bank- March 2015
- Blue Wasabi- April 2015
- Stewart-Morris, Awards, Gifts & Flags- May 2015