Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Chairman's Message: Season of Thanks

Ken Wampler

I hope that all businesses in the Greater Destin area are taking a few moments to be thankful to all those that contributed to the successful year of 2015.  I encourage everyone to stop for a moment and recognize that our community has a great deal to be thankful for, but especially recognize the first responders, city/county officials, and staff.  This group adds those services that we sometimes take for granted, but would not be able to enjoy our community without them.
The Chamber Ambassadors have had a number of ribbon cutting ceremonies recently, WealthTrust Asset Management, Richard P Chern MD, Somerby of Santa Rosa Beach, Porsche of Destin, Mama Sherry’s Pizza Wings & Things, Destination Segway Tours, Rollin Smoke BBQ, Emerald Coast Kids, and Westwinds Conference Center, each with great turnouts.  During the upcoming holiday months, we hope to see you at some of the following events: Christmas Tree Lighting at the Destin Community Center, Bowling for Business Tournament & Lunch, Destin Christmas Parade, Harbor Boat Parade, Business After Hours at Chamber’s Annual Holiday Party, and the Annual Awards & Installation Banquet, just to name a few.  Please check the Destin Chamber website for more details on the events.  For those that came out to the Bourbon at the Bay, thank you for participating and showing your support to this unique event.
Membership continues to increase with each passing week, and through November we have 983 active members as compared to 971 through October.  If you are looking for a quick way to gain exposure to your business, contact the staff to find out how you can take advantage of this great resource.  If you have a change in personnel or with any of your contact information, please contact the Chamber so we can update your membership file.
Regarding marketing exposure, the Chamber website continues to show great improvement.  As a comparison to last year, here are the key indicators; Sessions are up 38% year to date with 303,197 sessions, Users are up 32% with 222,935 users, and Page Views are up 18% with 559,951 page views.  During each leaders in business luncheon, I state what a great marketing medium the website is for all business, and this shows you just how great it really is, so please spread the word.
Finally I want to extend a warm thank you to two key staff members that have chosen to move onto other opportunities, Suzy Nicholson Hunt and Jacqui Luberto.  Suzy has been instrumental in the growth in all of the Chamber events over the years, and her wit and humor will be greatly missed.  Jacqui, although she was not at the Chamber for a long time, has really demonstrated what an energetic positive personality can do for the membership given the proper guidance.  Both have set standards and records that will make their successors’ jobs really difficult.  We wish you both the best of luck in your new adventures and ask that you continue to stay active in the community.
If there is ever anything we may do for you, please do not hesitate to call the Chamber at (850) 837-6241. We look forward to serving you throughout 2015 and together building this world-class community one business at a time. I hope everyone is Living the Dream in this place we call home, the Destin Area.

Ken Wampler
Newman-Dailey Resort Properties, Inc.
2015 Destin Area Chamber Chairman of the Board

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