Wednesday, April 8th, 2020

Chamber celebrates at 96th Annual Dinner

Posted: Friday, January 24, 2020

The 96th annual dinner of the Huntington County Chamber of Commerce was held Monday evening, January 20 at the Huntington PAL Club. More than 155 Chamber members and their guests were in attendance.

Randy Warner, 2019 chairman of the board, Randal J. Warner CPA, LLC, spoke to the group about some of the accomplishments the Chamber was involved with over the past year. He stated that the success of any organization comes down to the people.

Warner said, “I would personally like to thank Steve Kimmel and Angie Garcia for their leadership and dedication. It’s amazing how much they are able to accomplish. I invite you to visit the Chamber, the website and download the mobile app and see what the Huntington County Chamber of Commerce has to offer you.”

Warner went on to say, “I would like to touch on a few things that the Chamber has worked on this past year. As many of you know we held our bi-annual Business Expo at HU last March, and then of course we sponsored the 56th annual Heritage Days in June. Steve and Angie and many others put in long hours each year to make sure Heritage Days is a special event for our community. In September we kicked off a new program called Huntington County Coffee Connections, and lastly, the Chamber assisted in fundraising for the 4th of July Fireworks and also sold Christmas wreath bulbs to help fund the new Christmas wreath at Sunken Gardens. There is much more information listed in your Program of Action about the Chamber’s activities and programs.”

Warner presented Matt Ditzler, executive director, Huntington County Community Foundation, with the Ambassador of the Year award for 2019. Warner said, “The Ambassador of the Year is always available to attend ribbon cuttings, open houses, ground breakings, Business of the Month celebrations, After Hours and more. Ditzler works hard to attend as many Chamber events as possible and volunteers for other activities.”

The 2019 Volunteer of the Year recipient was presented to Christian Life Tabernacle and Pastor Richard Fishburn. Warner commented, “Christian Life Tabernacle has been extremely helpful on the Heritage Days steering committee, and has been instrumental in organizing the Kids Zone at the Balloon Festival for the past two years. Prior to their association with the Heritage Days steering committee, the church always participated in the Heritage Days parade. In 2019, the church and its members again stepped up and volunteered their services with the Christmas in the City event.”

Warner presented the Chamber’s Community Excellence Award for 2019 to former Mayor Brooks Fetters. Warner said, “Brooks is one of the Chamber’s and the community’s biggest supporter. His love for this community and its people are outwardly demonstrated daily. He has been a leader in this community for many years. Over the past eight years Fetters has served as Mayor of the City of Huntington and served our community with class and dignity.”

Warner also recognized the outgoing members of the board to include Steve Petry, W.A. Zimmer Co., and Leanne Runyan, Miller’s Merry Manor.

New to the board of directors for 2020 include Mike Richard, Optiv/Giggabuggy, and Bob Caley, Bob Caley Realtor/Century 21 Bradley.

The dinner and Chamber business were followed by guest speaker John Bry. Bry is the Principal Planner for the Oakland County, Michigan, Main Street Program. Bry gave a presentation detailing community revitalization for Huntington County.

Shown in the photos are the 2020 Chamber executive committee of the Chamber of Commerce. From left to right, Sonya Foraker, Parkview Huntington Hospital, chairman of the board; Darlene Stanley, JJ’s, chairman-elect; John Garrott, Beacon Credit Union, treasurer and Brock Zehr, Huntington University, assistant treasurer.