Family business

From left, family members who work at ADI, Staci Cunningham, Scott Cunningham, Merrill Cunningham, Wendy Cunningham, Stuart Cunningham and Rebekah Cunningham.


TOPEKA – A Chanute business was recognized as a Business of the Year by the Small Business Development Center.

ADI, Inc. in Chanute received the award Thursday in Topeka as the 2020 Existing Business of the Year from the 11-county area of southeast Kansas under the SBDC office at Pittsburg State University. Besides ADI as Existing Business of the Year, the SBDC also recognized a Fort Scott firm, Smallville CrossFit, as Emerging Business of the Year, and Progressive Products, Inc., of Pittsburg as Exporting Business of the Year.

“There’s a lot of great companies in this part of the world,” Scott Cunningham said, adding that the award is an affirmation of what his parents built and a chance to celebrate how far the company has come.

ADI, Inc. is an electric wire business at 516 W. Cherry, started in 1990 by Merrill and Wendy Cunningham. 

It currently has 35 full- and part-time employees. Cunningham said he hopes the award leads to more notice and more customers who seek out ADI.

He said ADI was started in a barn and that it was an honor to be nominated and recognized by someone at the state level.

Some of the uses of ADI wire product, Cunningham said, are in US missiles and Humvee vehicles, NASCAR race cars and boats for the border patrol.

He said ADI wires go in uniforms worn by the US Olympic fencing team to detect when an opponent’s sword or foil touches someone.

The wires also go into greens-keeping equipment for the Masters golf tournament at the Augusta Nationals, and lawnmowers at the White House. 

The Pittsburg SBDC office is one of eight regional offices in the state. Cunningham said ADI is doing a lot of work with SBDC.

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