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Finalist: Associated Video Producers

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When work is fun, it's not really work.|ret||ret||tab|

That's the case for Craig and Michele Kauffman, co-owners of Associated Video Producers Inc. AVP is a full-service production company offering services ranging from creative consultation to editing, duplication and media placement.|ret||ret||tab|

"We get to do fun jobs. We got to work on The Bachelor' with Aaron Buerge when they were in town filming," Michele Kauffman said. |ret||ret||tab|

Associated Video Producers Inc. is a finalist for the 2003 W. Curtis Strube Small Business of the Year Award.|ret||ret||tab|

AVP does about 40 percent television commercials, 40 percent business presentations, and 20 percent other, Craig said. "We work a lot for syndicated news programs," Che added.|ret||ret||tab|

The Kauffmans started working at AVP in 1981, then Craig Kauffman bought into the company in 1982. The Kauffmans purchased the company in 1994, he said.|ret||ret||tab|

Craig Kauffman acts as president, manager and cinematographer. Michelle Kauffman is controller.|ret||ret||tab|

"He's the one that builds the widget. But I love the numbers part and so we have two very distinct and different things we bring to the table. He's really good at what he does and I think I'm OK at what I do," Michele Kauffman said.|ret||ret||tab|

AVP's list of clients includes: American Express, Weight Watchers, MCI, McDonald's, ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, Disney Channel and Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Productions. "Hard Copy," "America's Most Wanted," "Inside Edition" and "Nova" have aired AVP's camera work.|ret||ret||tab|

AVP recently added CD-ROM and DVD production and duplication, Craig Kauffman said. He said the CD-ROMs and DVDs as mostly marketing presentations for businesses.|ret||ret||tab|

Besides expertise, AVP is built upon the Kauffmans' business philosophy, which is "integrity and honesty," Michele Kauffman said. Craig Kauffman added: "We give the client the best we can for the budget."|ret||ret||tab|

Too, "the equipment you have is only as good as the people who operate it," is part of the business and management philosophy statement that earned AVP a spot among the finalists. |ret||ret||tab|

Michele Kauffman said they like being a smaller organization.|ret||ret||tab|

"We've been up to 10 employees and now we're back down to six, and that really works well for us. We have been extremely blessed with wonderful employees along the way," she said. |ret||ret||tab|

AVP also assists nonprofit organizations with projects.|ret||ret||tab|

"Sometimes we are able to donate our services or give them at a lesser rate which we do for not-for-profit organizations," Michele Kauffman said. "That is probably the way we contribute most to the community as a whole."|ret||ret||tab|

The Kauffmans and AVP have membership in organizations such as Springfield's Best Locally Owned Companies.|ret||ret||tab|

"Small business is really what's made this country strong in so many ways and given individuals an opportunity to make something for themselves, which gives such tremendous pride to an individual. I want to work to ensure that continues," Michele Kauffman said.|ret||ret||tab|

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