Chamber recognizes local business leaders

Yesterday evening, the St Johns County Chamber of Commerce awarded several members of St Johns County’s business elite for their participation in strengthening the local business environment, according to a report from Historic City News reader Beau Phillips.

Among the awards presented during the Chamber’s 2012 Annual Dinner were Chamber member of the Year, Economic Development Member of the year, and Chamber Ambassador of the year.

“Because of the great work and dedication of our board members and other volunteers throughout St Johns County, 2012 has been a successful year,” said Kirk Wendland, President of the St Johns County Chamber. “Together, the Chamber and our partners will continue to work to improve the business community in 2013.”

In appreciation for her hard work with the Chamber of Commerce to build programming for small and emerging businesses, Bridget Van Landingham was recognized as the Chamber’s member of the year. Van Landingham served as the President of the Chamber’s US-1 SR-312 Council and will now serve as the president of the new Small Business Council. She and her council worked to help business people understand what health care reform means for businesses at the Health Care Reform Summit and she launched the Chamber’s Home Grown Success Network for home based businesses.

The Fred Schroeder Economic Development Council member of the year was awarded to Ronco Group’s Ron Avery for his passion for economic development and for the integral role, along with the St Johns County Industrial Development Authority and JaxUSA, he played in recruiting 2G Cenergy to St Johns County. Avery has been an active participant in this area’s Economic Development efforts representing St Johns on the Innovate Northeast Florida Steering Committee, by serving on the board of the Florida Manufacturers Association and by participating as a member of the Industrial Development Authority.

Stefanie Foley, with the Randstad Staffing Agency, was honored with the Gene Morse Ambassador of the Year award. Foley and her fellow ambassadors personally visit new and loyal members and participate in quarterly community service projects. In addition, Foley coordinates and publicizes ribbon cutting ceremonies for new businesses looking to jumpstart their company.

More than a dozen area businesses were recognized during the Chamber’s annual celebration of business held in downtown St Augustine at The White Room.

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