Leeza Crosby Edwards left and Natalie Tevis President of Airclaws Inc and Bryant Heating amp Cooling Systems Medal of Excellence recipient stand in front of the new Ford Fiesta donated to Leeza for her participation in the 39Dress for Success39 program

Leeza Crosby Edwards, left, and Natalie Tevis, President of Airclaws, Inc. and Bryant Heating & Cooling Systems Medal of Excellence recipient, stand in front of the new Ford Fiesta donated to Leeza for her participation in the 'Dress for Success' program.

Central Ohio Bryant Dealers Recognize 'Dress for Success' as a Bryant 'True Hero'

The Habegger Corp., which distributes Bryant’s heating and cooling systems across the Midwest, along with their central Ohio Bryant dealers, started a relationship with Dress for Success, which aspires to aid women in succeeding in the workplace.

Bryant Heating & Cooling Dealers of Central Ohio have recognized the "Dress for Success" Columbus program, after the non-profit was recognized as a Bryant "True Hero." With the recognition comes a new Ford Fiesta.

Bryant, a brand founded in Ohio more than a century ago, and that has grown into a nationally respected heating and cooling solutions provider, partnered with its distributor The Habegger Corporation, in selecting Dress for Success as a True Hero in the central Ohio region.

Dress for Success empowers women to achieve economic independence through a network of support, professional attire and career tools to help women thrive in work and life. Since opening in 2007, they have assisted over 10,000 women with services, at no charge.

Dress for Success empowers women to achieve economic independence through a network of support, professional attire and career tools to help women thrive in work and life.
Leeza Crosby Edwards, with her 'Dress for Success' award from Bryant Heating

Bryant recently launched a successful program dubbed “Women in HVAC” that seeks to promote the positive and often unheralded impact women have in an industry largely populated by men. As part of that movement, The Habegger Corp., which distributes Bryant’s heating and cooling systems across the Midwest, along with their central Ohio Bryant dealers, started a relationship with Dress for Success which aspires to aid women in succeeding in the workplace.

The Bryant True Heroes program allows Bryant dealers to give back to their communities by honoring local heroes who work to create stronger communities and too often go unrecognized for their service. In this case, the Bryant distributor has nominated Vicki Bowen Hewes, Chief Executive Officer for Dress for Success Columbus, as well as her staff as True Heroes in the greater Columbus area.

Bryant reports that the automobile donation is a reflection of the longstanding relationship between Bryant and The Habegger Corp., as well as the brands’ shared pride in the Dress for Success program.

Columbus-based Ricart Ford, which helped facilitate the donation by selling the automobile at cost to the Bryant dealers of Central Ohio and including a three-year service plan with the purchase, has made a significant investment in hiring and promoting women.

“Elena Ford of Ford Motor Company is Vice President of Global Dealer Consumer Experience and is a great example of woman leadership in business,” said Rick Ricart, spokesman at Ricart Ford. “She has paved the way for women in business by demonstrating the value of workplace and consumer value.”

Ricart employs 117 women, or 22 percent of its workforce — at its Columbus dealership. That number represents a three percent increase over the previous year, and Ricart predicts a continual growth of female employees for the upcoming year and beyond.

Hewes, Chief Executive Officer for Dress for Success Columbus, expressed gratitude for the shared commitment to women in the workplace and her organization’s ongoing work in the central Ohio region.

“Our mission is to empower underserved women to achieve in work and in life, and the innovative partnership forged between the Habegger Corp. and Bryant has been transformative for our organization and the clients we serve,” said Hewes. “This ground-breaking donation from Bryant and Ricart Ford truly changes the life of the woman and her family. Lack of reliable transportation is a significant barrier to the women we work with and dictates where our clients work, secure child care and access a myriad of other resources. These tremendous supporters coming together to help a woman in need is more than we could have ever dreamed and we are extremely grateful.”

The recipient, Leeza Crosby Edwards, was selected through a needs/impact-based process. She shared her excitement for how this donation will impact her family.

“I am so shocked and grateful! I broke into tears when I learned the news,” she said. “This is a life-altering gift for me and my family, and I want to thank everyone involved for providing this amazing gift.”

Ken Habegger, Regional Manager, Habegger, shared his excitement for the enduring commitment of Dress for Success and Habegger Corp. for women flourishing in the workplace.

“The project is one of those rare opportunities when you set out to do something good and you achieve something great. It humbles me and our entire family of Bryant dealers across Central Ohio to see the massive impact we’ve had in this recipient’s life with this automobile,” he said. “We anticipate a long and fruitful relationship helping women across Ohio achieve their full potential and hope this noteworthy woman inspires others to strive for better in their personal and professional lives knowing there will be organizations like Dress for Success there to help them achieve."

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