Chamber Annual Meeting Draws Over 1,200

Features Summary Of Achievements Over Last Fiscal Year

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

More than 1,200 of the area’s business leaders gathered at the Chattanooga Convention Center Wednesday for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Meeting, where Unum CEO Tom Watjen delivered the keynote presentation and Chamber leaders presented updates on Chattanooga CAN DO campaign activity.

The event took place from 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m. and also featured remarks from Chamber President and CEO Ron Harr, as well as the Chamber’s outgoing board chair, Diana Bullock, and incoming board chair, Howard Levine. 

Among the highlights presented during the annual review were the following accomplishments by the Chamber:

Provided direct job creation assistance to nine companies which announced more than 1,100 jobs
Took the lead in generating national press for Chattanooga, with efforts that reached 153 million people worldwide and garnered placements in Forbes, Wired, The Economist, CBS This Morning and Bloomberg TV
Supported Chamber Councils in hosting more than 150 events and raising $18,750 for local schools
Engaged more than 1,100 volunteers to bring the Chamber’s school-to-work programs to 13,000 middle and high school students
 

“We are the local companies that come together to make Chattanooga better,” said Mr. Harr about the network of 1,700 companies that comprise the Chamber’s membership. “We support job creation and education in ways that no enterprise could do on its own. We build each other’s companies and keep more dollars in the local economy by doing business together. We support new businesses in starting up, help existing industries grow, recruit new companies to Chattanooga and promote this community to the whole world.”

Mr. Harr cited the number and quality of connections within the Chamber’s membership as the network’s greatest strength as he announced a new campaign to grow the organization’s membership to 2,014 companies by the end of 2014.

The event also highlighted the Ooltewah/Collegedale Council as the 2012-2013 Chamber Council of the Year and honored David Hamilton of Santek Waste Services as the 2012-2013 Chamber Ambassador of the Year. Chamber Ambassador Dana Bolin of Comtrust Federal Credit Union also received the Chamber’s Diamond Award for her outstanding volunteer service, while ambassadors Eddie Wilkes of Banners by Lexi and Constance Coffman of Preferred Computers received the Double Diamond and Triple Diamond awards, respectively. 

For a full synopsis of Chamber activity over the last year, click here to view the 2012-2013 Annual Report.


SmartFinancial And Cornerstone Bancshares Announce Merger Completion

SmartFinancial, Inc., parent company of SmartBank, and Cornerstone Bancshares, Inc., parent company of Cornerstone Community Bank, announced the closing of the merger of their two holding companies, with the combined company to carry the name of “SmartFinancial, Inc.”   The company also intends to change the trading symbol of its common stock to “SMBK” (OTCBB: SMBK) from ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Ranks 3rd In South And 51st Overall On 11th Annual “Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report”

Allstate Insurance Company released its 11th annual “Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report”. Chattanooga ranked 51st out of America’s 200 largest cities and third in the Southern Region (defined as Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana) in terms of car collision frequency. According to the report, the average driver in Chattanooga will experience an auto collision ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center May Get Bankruptcy Trustee Who Would Focus On Sale Of Fort Oglethorpe Hospital

Hutcheson Medical Center may be headed for appointment of a bankruptcy trustee, who would focus on the sale of the financially-strapped Fort Oglethorpe hospital. An attorney told a bankruptcy court judge in Rome, Ga., on Wednesday afternoon that a buyer is discussing paying over $20 million for all the assets of the community hospital. Attorney Rob Williamson ... (click for more)

Hutcheson Medical Center Unsecured Creditors Committee Asks Trustee Be Appointed For Fort Oglethorpe Hospital; Asks Bankruptcy Not Be Dismissed

The Unsecured Creditors Committee of Hutcheson Medical Center is opposing a motion by U.S. Trustee Guy Gebhardt for a bankruptcy judge to dismiss the bankruptcy for the financially-ailing Fort Oglethorpe hospital.   Instead, the group is asking Judge Paul Bonapfel to appoint a trustee to oversee the Hutcheson finances. In a 16-page motion, the committee said if the bankruptcy ... (click for more)

Who's Responsible For East Ridge's Stadium?

There just can be no excuse for East Ridge High School's stadium being in such dangerous condition that it has been condemned.   Where is responsible for this? I know there are a few other stadiums like this as well. And there is no excuse for this.  Building new and beautiful schools, state of the art technology. Top athletic facilities as well. Yet, East Ridge ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Barners Trounce Who?

There is a website known as Grammarly that just completed a profound study. An automated proof-reading company (who I hope never finds out about me) collected 100 comments that each included over 50 words from the comment blogs of the nation’s preseason Top 25 college football teams. Then they fed them into the company’s huge algorithm computer and checked each fan base for punctuation, ... (click for more)