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Sleep Train's Dale Carlsen wins Ernst & Young honor

 Image of Dale CarlsenDale Carlsen

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Sleep Train founder and CEO Dale Carlsen has received the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in the retail and consumer products category in northern California.

An independent panel of judges selected Carlsen for the award, which recognizes entrepreneurs who excel and succeed in areas such as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities. It was presented Saturday at a gala in San Francisco.

"It's an honor to receive this prestigious award on behalf of all of our employee owners, and be recognized among the nation's top leaders for building a company that demonstrates continued growth and innovation and fosters strong relationships with our business partners and the greater community," Carlsen said in a statement.

"During the past 27 years, Sleep Train has grown from one store and few employees to a multi-branded company with more than 255 stores and 1,250 employee owners. We've created the Sleep Train Foster Kids program to have a significant impact on an important social cause, and became the only employee-owned sleep shop in the nation. I am proud to share this tremendous recognition with my entire team, whose support has been both vital and inspiring," he said.

Sleep Train ranks No. 20 among Furniture/Today's Top 100 U.S. Furniture Stores, with estimated 2011 sales of $371.8 million, up 18.6% from the previous year.

Carlsen is now eligible for consideration for the national Entrepreneur of the Year Award, with winners in several categories to be announced Nov. 27.

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