Monday, July 13, 2015

Chamber of Commerce 110th Annual Meeting

June 18, 2015 ~ Tonight was the Columbia Chamber of Commerce's 110th Annual Membership Dinner. It was held at the Holiday Inn Executive Center and would be a recognition dinner to the leadership of the 2014-2015 Columbia Chamber of Commerce including committee chairs. (Photo Credit: Wally Pfeffer)

Getting the chance to work with some of these incredibly talented women (and Matt) at the Chamber is pretty darn awesome. They are passionate about the Chamber and it's members and go above and beyond to take care of it's entire membership... tonight would be a fun night! 

Tonight was a really special night as two of the four awards that would be given away tonight would be given to two very special ladies that I nominated. These two women would make me work extremely hard to pull of some pretty cool "SPRY-izes" as I like to call them! 

Outstanding Citizen of the Year Award

This award is given to someone that lives in Boone County, has given significant contributions to our community and/or gone above and beyond the call of duty. For me this person was Cindy Mustard and she had no clue that I nominated her for this award. It took me a little more than a few days to put my thoughts together when thinking about how Cindy has made our community better but once I started I couldn't stop! She is an inspiration to so many and it was a true honor to nominate her for this award. The real "SPRY-ize" was creating the video.... I knew that we might not ever get Cindy to the Chamber's Membership Dinner so while brainstorming with Nelly Roach (the mastermind behind the video) we decided to put Cindy in the video! Brilliant! She wouldn't know who the recipient was because the video would release that information at the dinner so she would have to come to see who got it! It was going to be perfect! (Photo Credit: Wally Pfeffer)

Once Cindy arrived she would stay with Jolene Shultz and they would sit at our table which was on the opposite side of the room.... this was purposely done as there were several of her friends coming as a surprise to her and we didn't really want them to see each other. The best was that Cindy thought Jolene was receiving the award but Jolene knew it was Cindy and I was trying to keep her wrangled at our table! The problem when a women like Cindy knows everyone is that she doesn't stay still! Thank goodness they were ready to get dinner started so everyone had to sit down and I could relax a little! 

As they began to play the video I pop up on the screen talking... no biggie. Then Cindy pops up on the screen and starts talking... she looks over at me and winks. In my head I am thinking "you don't even have a clue sugar.... I got ya!" Please watch the video... about 1/2 way through they announce Cindy as the recipient but please watch/listen to the end. Nelly and her team at Caledon Virtual did an amazing job of putting this together and everyone that spoke was spot on! 

Congratulations Cindy Mustard on a very well deserved honor!
I'm so proud to know you and to call you a friend!

Debin Benish Outstanding Businesswoman of the Year

This award is given to a woman that exhibits leadership in supporting small businesses, volunteers in our community, owns a Chamber-member business and mentors other women. When I found out that Nancy Fay had nominated me for this award back in 2011 I was honored. For her to take time to fill out the application and submit my name for something like this was very emotional and humbling. It was only fitting to return the favor and nominate her for the 2015 Debin Benish Outstanding Businesswoman Award. Nancy is a wonderful person and someone I am glad I have in my life. It's because of her that I wanted to chair the Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors.
(Photo Credit: Wally Pfeffer)

Nancy knew I had nominated her because I needed information about her work history and volunteer information that only she would have. I asked her to go to the Chamber's Annual Membership Dinner with me as her husband and daughter would be out of town.... so she thought! I got Elton's cell phone number and once I wrangled Nancy on the opposite side of the room I sent Elton and Whitney, her daughter, a text so they could enter the room. Then Nancy takes off and I am running around as if I am visiting with others while trying to keep an eye on her! My goodness! Keeping an eye on Nancy and Cindy was about to give me a stroke! LOL! They certainly kept me busy!

Nancy, Congratulations on a very well deserved honor and I am very proud of all that you have accomplished! You are a wonderful friend!

Very happy for these two wonderful ladies! 

Emerging Professional of the Year

Congratulations Emily Clapp on receiving this very deserved honor! Kind of fun seeing her on the Chamber side and helping to design this program and now being on the receiving end of this award!

George and Nadine Trial Ambassador of the Year

This is a very special award as George and Nadine Trial were instrumental people within the Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors. Each year this award is given to a Chamber Ambassador that shows dedication, spirit as well attendance. This year the 2015 George and Nadine Trial Ambassador of the Year Award was given to Mark Mills! Congratulations Mark and a very well deserved honor!
(Photo Credit: Wally Pfeffer)

A huge thank you to Heather Hargrove for serving as the chair of the Chamber of Commerce. You did a fabulous job girl! Thank you Heather Stewart for serving as our Women's Network President and you too did a fabulous job! Thank you to Kris Bezneck for serving as the chair for EPIC and I am sure you rocked it and last but not least thank you to Nancy Allison for serving as our Chamber of Commerce Ambassador Chair.... I know you rocked that wild group!

Thank you to all of the chairs/co-chairs for the various committees that make up these 4 divisions of the Chamber. Without your leadership and passion it wouldn't have been possible to have such a wonderful year!

Great event everyone and congratulations!

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