Seventy members and their guests came out for the Annual Morrow County Chamber of Commerce Fall Dinner at Handlebar Ranch and Sportsman Club last Tuesday.
Eleven businesses, professionals and agencies were present to receive awards celebrating their milestones in business. They include: Kilgour’s Insurance Store for 20 years, 25 years for Bob McElroy Century 21, Dave Jackson Inc. for 35 years, 40 years for Whetstone Industries, Dr. Allen Stojkovic’s 40th year, 45 years for the Morrow County Historical Society, 45 years for Delaware-Morrow Mental Health and Recovery, United Way of Morrow County 55 years, 65 years for Morrow County Chamber of Commerce, 165 years for the Morrow County Fair and 170 years for the Morrow County Auditor’s Office.
Dr. Allen Stojkovic, DDS was given a special honor for his 40 years as a small business in the county. He was presented with a commemorative coin from the Morrow County Sesquicentennial.
Chamber President, Andy Bower called the Annual Business meeting to order and presented a written annual report for members. Bower noted that 2014 is the first year the Morrow County Chamber has had a profit in many years. Net profit for 2014 was $1,400.
Chamber membership continues to grow with 21 new members this year. Two businesses didn’t rejoin and four businesses sold, merged or were closed. This was the best net gain in several years.
Bower said the Chamber Board credited several successful fundraisers for the positive balance along with cuts in expenses such as eliminating credit card expenses and renegotiating internet, phone and equipment contracts. There is $7,000 in the checking account at present. Bower added that there will be no increase for member fees this year.
Morrow County Chamber of Commerce is a “true non-profit,” Bower emphasized. Every dollar raised with memberships and fundraisers covers expenses. The fundraisers also benefit both members and the community. Major fundraisers include the Business Forecast Breakfast with business reports from all sectors in the county, the Chamber Sweet Corn Festival, Chamber Golf Outing and Annual Dinner and Silent Auction.
Added value for Chamber memberships in 2015 included seminars in social media led by Nicole Workman of Marion Technical College and a public speaking seminar with Richard Vale. Those seminars have been very well received and an additional seminar on Quick books with Jessie Clark of Community Tax Services will be added in 2016.
Both the Chamber Website and Facebook pages have grown significantly in 2015. The Chamber Community Calendar of Events is a “Go-to site” for Morrow County events.
Dan Boysel of Consolidated Electric Cooperative was auctioneer for a lively auction that concluded the program.
Alberta Stojkovic is a correspondent with the Morrow County Sentinel and can be reached at [email protected]