Saturday, July 22nd, 2017

Chamber celebrates at 93rd Annual Dinner

Posted: Friday, January 20, 2017

The 93rd annual dinner of the Huntington County Chamber of Commerce was held Monday evening, January 16 at the Huntington PAL Club. More than 170 Chamber members and their guests were in attendance.

Kay Schwob, 2016 Chamber chair, Huntington University, introduced the 2017 chair of the board, Ryan Lemon, Novae Corporation. The executive team for 2017 also includes Steve Petry, chair-elect, W.A. Zimmer Co.; Randy Warner, treasurer, Randal J. Warner CPA LLC and Sonya Foraker, assistant treasurer, Parkview Huntington Hospital. New board members include Eric Fawcett, Bippus State Bank and John Garrott, Beacon Credit Union.

Schwob spoke to the group praising her fellow chamber members for their accomplishments in 2016. She said, “It’s been a fun year. At just under 400 members, I think we are one of the strongest chambers in our area for our size.”

The Chamber’s Community Excellence Award was presented to First Federal Savings Bank, Huntington, for the involvement of the business and its employees in the community. First Federal Savings Bank has offered assistance to the Parkview Huntington Family YMCA, the Huntington County Community Learning Center, Parkview Boys & Girls Club, Huntington County United Way, Huntington University and more. Randy Sizemore, senior vice president and chief financial officer of First Federal Savings Bank, accepted the award.

Craig and Judy Lee, owners KFC Huntington, were recognized as Volunteers of the Year for their dedication to the chamber-sponsored Heritage Days festival. The husband-and-wife team has served on the Heritage Days steering committee for 17 years, the last two as co-chairs, and has also been involved with the festival’s Kids Zone, marketplace, pony rides, bounce houses, bed races and the balloon festival.

Steve Godfroy, human resources and safety director at Perfection Wheel, was honored as Ambassador of the Year. The Chamber’s ambassadors represent the Chamber in the community at ribbon cuttings, open houses, Business of the Month celebrations, After Hours, breakfasts and more.

Outgoing chamber board members Michael Zahn, who had served since 2011, and Adam Stroup, who joined the board in 2014 were recognized for their service to the Chamber.

Schwob concluded her term as Chamber chair, recounting the Chamber’s past year, which saw the implementation of an “Eat.Shop.Live. Do More Huntington” social media promotion and the Chamber’s Business EXPO, which was condensed from the two-day affair of past years into just one day.

She also explained that Heritage Days saw changes, too, with events relocating from Warren Street to Cherry Street, and the Farmers’ Market growth includes acceptance of credit, debit and EBT cards as well as WIC vouchers.

“The Chamber and many of its members supported the Huntington County Community Learning Center,” Schwob said, which opened last August, and the Chamber’s involvement in Huntington North High School’s annual Career Day allows the school’s freshmen a glimpse of career possibilities. The Chamber also coordinated Huntington County’s participation in the Indiana Bicentennial celebration.

The dinner and Chamber business were followed by entertainment by Rik Roberts, a professional comedian, who entertained the crowd with stories about marriage, parenthood, family in Arkansas, rental cars, police including a Barney Fife impersonation, Al Gore and Ray Stevens. He concluded his act by bringing out his guitar and involving Ryan Lemon in a rousing final musical number.