On Friday, October 1st, WCTE held the 4th annual Blues and Brews. It was advertised as a “toe-tappin’ knees- slappin’ hand clappin’ cure for the blahs.” It was all of that and more! Toes are still tapping.
The event would not have enjoyed the same success without our food and beverage donors, and especially not without the help of one of our key strategic partners, Ottis Phillips. Ottis is the President of SEC Enterprises, Inc. If the company name does not immediately ring a bell, the names of the delicious products SEC distributes may set your mouth to watering - products like Coors, Blue Moon, Miller, Samuel Adams, Guinness, Heineken and Corona, just to name a few.
Ottis Phillips was born in Cookeville. His family arrived from North Carolina in the 1800’s. With a degree in Engineering and a Masters in Business, Ottis began his career with Fleetguard where he was transferred to Texas and met his wife Cindy. Together they “have raised five wonderful children” - Kristie, Beth, Parker, Emily and Hunter. Beth has given them two grandchildren, Leigh and Caden.
“I am blessed to have such a supportive wife in Cindy. She is my partner in everything and without her, I wouldn’t have had the success I’ve had.”
Ottis had an interest in the business of beer and his first job in beer distribution brought him back from Texas to Nashville and Coors of the Cumberland, “the first Coors distributorship east of the Mississippi.” When the company went bankrupt, Ottis and Cindy went back to Texas where Ottis was hired as an area sales manager for Coors. When the opportunity came to move back to Cookeville in 1990 to work for SEC as the GM, he grabbed it. In 1995, Harold Evans offered to sell him the business and Ottis jumped at that opportunity too.
“Although I watch very little TV (football games are the exception), I have long been a fan and supporter of PBS,” said Ottis. “After moving back to Cookeville. we were more than happy to help WCTE as opportunities came about. Blues and Brews has been a great cooperative effort that benefits the station financially and provides exposure for our products. We also sponsor a board at the Great TV Auction. Investing in WCTE is an investment in the Upper Cumberland Region. Absolutely.”
“I personally love the feature programs that WCTE carries. I like anything Ken Burns produces. I also like the Antiques Road Show and I try to catch some of the Smithville Fiddlers’ Jamboree. My grandkids watch morning childrens’programs like Super Why and Dinosaur Train.
“WCTE provides a tremendous public service to our community that too many of us take for granted. WCTE is no different than my business in that they also have to pay utilities, payroll, equipment maintenance, repairs, rent, etc. Unfortunately they don’t have a paying customer base and steady revenue stream to pay the bills. Without voluntary public support and contributions, there would be no WCTE."
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