BATAVIA — A longtime business owner and community benefactor will be honored Friday for his efforts when Bill Hayes steps forward to receive the Genesee County Health & Humanitarian Award.
The Jerome Foundation will present the award to Hayes, owner of Turnbull Heating & Air Conditioning.
The award recognizes volunteer men and women of Genesee County who have helped promote emotional, physical and spiritual well-being of the area’s residents. Nominations reflected “ordinary people who reach far beyond themselves to the lives of those in need, bringing hope, care, and friendship, and helping build a stronger, healthier community,” the foundation said in a press release.
“It came as a total surprise to me. I’m humbled beyond measure that I was honored with this award. It just floored me,” Hayes told The Daily News Monday. “I just do what I do because I like what I do. When people need something and they call me, I give it to them. People in need are what I like to take care of. I’m involved in a lot of different things because that’s what I want to do. I’ve been in Batavia 30 years.”
Hayes, who was born and raised in Rochester, said people know him as the owner of Turnbull, which he purchased in 1991. The business to provide services over seven counties in Western New York.
“They don’t know me from the street, they know me from providing service at Turnbull,” he said.
Hayes has served on the following boards, the Jerome Foundation said: the Business Education Alliance (BEA); YMCA, Genesee County Chamber of Commerce; Zoning Board of Appeals, Plumbing Board and Police Task Force for the city of Batavia; and Cornell Cooperative Extension. He has also assisted the following organizations with his business service: Habitat for Humanity, YMCA, YWCA, Salvation Army, Crossroads House, Notre Dame High School, St. Joseph School, Veterans, All Babies Cherished, Care-a-Van and GLOW ARC.
“Bill Hayes checks all the boxes as a devoted family man and strong business and community leader. Upon purchasing Turnbull Heating & Air Conditioning in 1991, Bill moved into the community and immediately made an impact,” said Ricky Palermo, a past award recipient who nominated Hayes. “He is a leader in his field and takes pride in employing veterans and active service men and women, as he himself served six years and is a Navy veteran.”
Jaylene Smith-Kilner, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Genesee County, wrote, “Bill is always on deck as a community partner of Habitat. When our families lay their heads on their pillows in their new home for their night’s rest, it is through Bill Hayes’s generous heart that they keep warm physically and in their hearts.
Construction Manager PJ Riner said, “When Bill has his crew on our build site, he always says ‘Let’s do some Habitat,’ with a smile on his face, ready to go.”