Wednesday, August 31, 2016

President’s Message: Celebrating Chamber’s History & Planning for is Future

It’s hard to believe that there is only one month left in the 2016 third quarter.  The end of the year is approaching fast.  It makes one wonder where the year has gone.  Time seems to slip by without notice.  We all seem busier than ever.  So to all of you who have taken the time to attend an event, volunteer, stop by and say hello, send us an email, or call just to say hi, I thank you.  To those of you who continue to support our efforts of building a world-class community, I say thank you, even if you haven’t attended anything or volunteered.  You’re all important to the overall health and well-being of this community.

I attended the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives National Convention the second week of August.  I truly enjoy catching up with long-time friends in the chamber profession, people with whom I’ve ‘grown up’ in this profession over the years. It’s fun to compare stories from our years, both funny and serious.  It seems that no matter how big or small a chamber is, we all have the same issues and the same successes.  The scales are just different.

Some tidbits I picked up while there: chambers of commerce who are not involved in economic development in some way are going to get left behind; millennials are tired of being labeled as such and want to take an active role in developing their communities; technology is changing the way people travel and visit, not just the way they do business; to add value, the chamber must be a filter and an analyst to help determine the value of information.

We are heading into our board retreat in late October.  We’ll be sure to take all of this into consideration.  We need to be sure we are out front with our plan so we are positioned to meet the needs of the community, while staying flexible enough to adapt to the fluidity of today’s rapid pace of change.

And as the end of the year approaches, that means the holidays.  I encourage you all to buy and purchase locally.  We all have many holiday gifts to buy, and we have a tremendous opportunity to boost our locally economy by buying local.  We have great chamber member businesses who have everything you need, right down to the last decoration or food item for the holidays.  It doesn’t take any more time to drive down the street and purchase from them.

It has been a lot of fun this year celebrating our 50th anniversary.  Many people have come forward with ideas and thoughts on the chamber trivia that’s been included in Tuesday Talking Points.  We’ve received a great history lesson this year on the chamber.  It is a great accomplishment and a testament to this community that the chamber can celebrate 50 years!

All of this will culminate on Dec. 15, at The Henderson Resort when we hold our 50th Anniversary Celebration (black tie optional).  We are combining our annual holiday party and annual banquet into this event, so it will be the only big event in December or January.  The only portion of the annual banquet we’ll build into the night will be the awards presentations.  The business portion of the banquet will be done at our January Leaders in Business Luncheon.  There will be great food, a live band (Triggerproof, and they are great!), and a fun celebration.

Thanks again for all you do for the community and for the chamber.  With you, we’ll continue to pursue our mission: Advocating for businesses – strengthening our community.

With wishes for continued success, and until next time,

Shane A. Moody, CCE, FCCP
President and CEO
Destin Chamber of Commerce

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