Sen. Andy Zay, R-Huntington, left, holds his Guardian Award, which was presented to him by Barbara Quandt, NFIB State Director in Indiana, right.

The Indiana Office of National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the state’s leading small business advocacy organization, announced Thursday that Sen. Andy Zay, R-Huntington, earned its Guardian of Small Business award, according to a press release.

Zay was presented the award by NFIB State Director in Indiana, Barbara Quandt.

Zay is a third-generation small business owner. Zay Leasing & Rentals serves the small-town community of Huntington, population 17,000. Sen. Zay believes in customer service and supporting his local community.

Quandt said like thousands of other Indiana small business communities, Zay has felt the pinch of the coronavirus crisis.

Quandt said thanks to a PPP loan, Zay was able to keep his employees and their families on the payroll.

Quandt said while Zay took a hit from rental car sales during spring break and the summer tourist season, he’s confident that if the legislature continues to support small business issues, Indiana’s economy will rebound.

Quandt said that rings true with NFIB’s recent Small Business Optimism Economic Trends report, which rose nearly 4 points to a historically high reading,

The Guardian of Small Business award is the most prestigious honor that NFIB, or the National Federation of Independent Business, bestows on legislators in recognition of their efforts to support small businesses. The NFIB Indiana Leadership Council, an advisory board comprised of NFIB members, voted to present the award to the legislator for his outstanding leadership on small business issues.

Zay, who lives in Huntington, represents Senate District 17, which includes Huntington, North Manchester, Columbia City and Wabash and surrounding areas.