Custom Tool & Machine, Inc. Named Small Business of the Year

ROANOKE, VA (October 5, 2017) – Roanoke Regional Chamber and Roanoke Regional Small Business Development Center named Custom Tool & Machine, Inc. the 2017 Small Business of the Year. The Roanoke-based manufacturer specializes in precision CNC machining and serves industries including defense, aerospace, energy, robotics, transportation and medical.

Custom Tool & Machine was recognized on October 5 at the Chamber’s 31st Annual Small Business Awards. The annual program showcases the accomplishments of the small business sector which is composed of more than 90 percent of the area’s business community.

Founded in 1992 by Wayne and Sandra Myers, Custom Tool & Machine began in a two-car garage with a few manual machines and a dream. Just five years later, the company purchased a 6,000-square-foot facility in Hollins and expanded again in 2002 and 2016. Today, the production and tool shop’s customer base stretches across the United States and into Sweden. Custom Tool & Machine seeks out the latest advancements and technology in precision machining and is currently working on the most innovative products in its history, including a 3-D printer that can print human tissue.

“This year’s Small Business Awards selection committee had a very difficult decision to make as there were a number of highly successful small businesses represented in the competition,” said Joyce Waugh, Roanoke Regional Chamber president/CEO. Waugh continued, “The committee was impressed by Custom Tool & Machine’s growth, diverse customer base and the company’s unwavering commitment to providing quality products and customer service.”

A committee of local business people evaluates nominees in terms of increased sales, employee growth, staying power, innovativeness and contributions to the community. To be eligible for the award, companies must meet SBA small business standards and be at least three years old.

Award winners by category are:



Eye Doctor Returns to Roanoke to Practice at State-of-the-Art Facility

Dr. Vishak JohnRoanoke, VA – October 4, 2017.  Vistar Eye Center announces the addition of retina specialist Dr. Vishak John to its team of physicians. Dr. John, a graduate of Cave Spring High School, is returning to the Roanoke area after spending time in various cities across the southeast for medical school, residency, and specialized training. Dr. John most recently served as an assistant professor in the Ophthalmology Department at Wake Forest School of Medicine in North Carolina. He will be Vistar’s fifth retina specialist on staff.

“It’s great to be home and I can’t wait to start serving the people of Southwest Virginia,” said Dr. Vishak John. “After being away from Roanoke for 18 years to study, train, and work in various cities around the East Coast, I can tell there’s an exciting new energy happening in Roanoke’s medical field. Vistar is certainly a part of that movement. The state-of-the-art facilities and top-quality treatments are those that could be found in some of the biggest cities in the southeast.”

Dr. John received his medical degree from the Boston University School of Medicine and continued his education as a resident at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He also specialized in vitreoretinal surgery as a fellow at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, Florida.

Vistar Eye Center’s retina specialists treat many complex retinal diseases including age-related macular degeneration, retinal detachment, macular holes, and diabetic retinopathy. Dr. John will begin seeing patients October 5th. He will be practicing primarily at Vistar’s Oak Grove location, but will also be taking appointments at the Roanoke (Peters Creek), Wytheville, Martinsville, and Dublin locations.

For more information about Vistar Eye Center, visit


Brown Edwards Expands Service Offerings with the Addition of New Director

Cindy GrossBrown Edwards & Company, LLP, a Top 100 Accounting Firm, is pleased to announce Cindy Gross, CPA, CISA, has joined the firm as a director in the information technology audit practice.  Prior to joining Brown Edwards, Cindy was a director in one of the top 10 firms in the nation where she provided IT audit and consulting services to a wide range of entities including financial services, technology, and healthcare entities.  She has over 15 years of experience in system development and design. At Brown Edwards, she will focus on providing a full complement of value-added IT assurance and advisory services, ranging from traditional system audits and SOC engagements to penetration testing and Sarbanes-Oxley control evaluations. She will also apply her depth and expertise in the areas of Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity planning, Vendor Management, and IT Risk Assessments. Cindy will provide services to clients throughout the firm’s nine offices.

A 2006 graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, Cindy has a Master of Professional Accountancy degree. In addition, Cindy has a B.S. degree in Computer Programming and Information Systems from Shepherd University. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) and is a Certified Information Systems Auditor through ISACA.

For more details about Brown Edwards, visit


Earth Fare Celebrates Grand Opening in Roanoke

Earth Fare is coming to Roanoke on November 8 and is giving away one (1) $100 Gift Card to a lucky winner. Plus, for every five people who share the contest on Facebook, they’ll add another gift card to the pile, up to 20 $100 Gift Cards! So the odds are in your favor if you share with your friends! Enter now for a chance to win.