St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce Communications Manager Tara Howard reported to Historic City News that the Chamber recently its Annual Dinner and installation of officers as it began its 2009-2010 fiscal year.
Also recognized were many of its superb volunteer leaders – those who have given steadfast support and ample time to the organization.
Serving this year are Jill Atwood-Hall of Calhoun & Atwood, LLC as Chairman; Jeff Mayers of Sawgrass Marriott Resort as Vice Chairman; Todd Neville of Taylor, Wainio & Neville, P.A. as Treasurer; Steve Cupolo of Premier Properties Realty Group, Inc. as Secretary; and Don Wallis of Upchurch, Bailey & Upchurch Atty as Immediate Past Chairman.
Atwood-Hall, a Managing Partner at Calhoun & Atwood, LLC, is also the Immediate Past Chair of the Chamber’s South Beaches Business Council and Treasurer of the St. Augustine Beach Civic Association.
In addition, Jill has worked on several other community projects and says that she “really enjoys giving back to this great area we live in.”
Greg Greiner of McGuinness Commercial Properties was elected as Chairman of the Economic Development Council (EDC) and Ellen Avery-Smith of Rogers Towers, P.A. was elected as Vice Chairman.
The Member of the Year Award was presented to Historic Tours of America for the generous support of the Leadership and Youth Leadership Programs from their onset. In doing so, Historic Tours of America not only made these programs feasible for the Chamber to conduct by providing transportation services but also added character to the experience of participating in them.
Bridget Van Landingham, an outstanding individual and supporter of the Chamber of Commerce, was this year’s recipient of the Chamber Chairman’s Award. Through Van Landingham’s leadership of the Ambassador Program, she elevated standards and created a more cohesive and accountable group of people who comprise the Chamber’s most active volunteer committee.
The EDC Fred Schroeder Member of the Year Award – named in honor of the late Fred Schroeder, a leader in economic development for St. Johns County who was responsible for bringing VAW of America (now Hydro Aluminum) to St. Johns County in the 1970’s, and was a leader in the Chamber of Commerce and one of the founders of the EDC – was presented to Ellen Avery-Smith of Rogers Towers, P.A. Avery-Smith has taken the initiative to be a strong advocate for economic development at various legislative events, always ready and willing to contribute knowledge and expertise to advance the EDC’s efforts and ensure that our community remains competitive in economic development activities.
Matthew Dionne of Hydro Aluminum was presented the EDC Chairman’s Award for his work in creating a positive economic impact in the community. The employees of Hydro Aluminum are great corporate citizens of St. Johns County, working with local schools and other community organizations, like the Chamber. They also created 90 new jobs this year and continue to look for ways to add to our local economy.
For the third year running, the Ambassador of the Year Award was received by Marty Lewis of Money Pages, Inc. – one of the most active and visible members of the Ambassador Program. Lewis has been involved in the Ambassador Program for several years and has volunteered many hours at Chamber Monthly Mixers, Ribbon Cuttings and other events, and also initiated and continues to lead the community service component of the Ambassador program.