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The 2019 Charleston Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Dinner was held this past Saturday, the 26th, at the Grand Ballroom at Eastern. We had such an incredible crowd and I want to thank everyone who came out for the event!

Thanks to the help of Eastern staff and the Chamber’s Diplomats, the Grand Ballroom looked stunning. Thank you to Eastern for providing us with, not only the Ballroom, but with the delicious meal as well. A quartet of Eastern students provided lovely background music during our cocktail hour. Thank you to the students; Addie Bayer, Eliot Crispin, Jackson Frosh, and Conor Baltz for providing the music and to Dr. Sam Fagaly for organizing the music.

The Small Business of the Year Award was presented to Paap Printing to honor their professional excellence and service to our community. Henigman Oil Company sponsored the award and Gary Henigman, President of Henigman Oil Company, was at the dinner to present the award. I would like to thank Paap Printing for their contributions to our community and Henigman Oil Company for sponsoring the award.

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Roy Lanham, Director and Campus Minister at the Newman Center, was presented with the Citizen of the Year Award. Mr. Lanham is involved with many organizations in Charleston, as well, as involved with international outreach through programs like Water for Life in Haiti. All those who know him, agree that Roy was the perfect choice to receive the award. I would like to thank Roy for all he does for the Newman Center, our community, and those all over the world! This year’s Citizen of the Year Award was sponsored by Machinery Management Services, Inc and was presented by Matt Piescinski, a longtime friend of Roy. Thank you to Machinery Management Service, Inc for sponsoring the award and thank you to Matt for presenting the award!

Chas Parker was the recipient of this year’s Diplomat of the Year Award. The Chamber Diplomats are a group of volunteers who help serve as the front line at Chamber events and activities. The Diplomat of the Year Award a ballot vote among the Diplomats. Chas is extremely deserving of this recognition and it was my honor to present her with the award. I would like to thank Clarence Miller Insurance for sponsoring the award!

I would like to thank Tammy Bell, owner of Ike’s, for welcoming us and hosting our after party. Fun was had by all who attended! I am already anticipating next year’s Annual Dinner!

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Jessica Killough is president and CEO for the Charleston Area Chamber of Commerce.

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