Last week Mayor McDaniel delivered his annual State of the Community address. This year’s version was delivered virtually, but it still provided an opportunity for those who wanted it to have more of an in-person feel to it to attend virtually. There were opportunities to visit vendors as well as to network with fellow Chamber members. The event also doubles as the “Annual Meeting” of the Chamber of Commerce, at which time Chamber board members whose terms expire are bid farewell, and new board members are welcomed to their new leadership position. Board members can only serve for two consecutive terms of three years each, and I had completed my two terms. So sadly, I was one of the people who was being bid farewell, sort of.
As City Manager, I was asked to continue to participate in the meetings of the board as an Honorary Board Member. While this means that I can no longer vote on the agenda items of the board, it does mean that I can still participate and contribute meaningfully to the direction of the Chamber of Commerce. As the large business community that we are, the city’s involvement in the Chamber of Commerce is certainly in its own best interest. Supporting the business community and its success is not just beneficial to the businesses themselves, but also the overall success of the community.
I want to thank the Chamber of Commerce for the opportunity they have given me to continue to serve. I also want to thank Dr. Pete Karsten from Baker College for his leadership of the Chamber in 2020 as its Chairperson. As we begin 2021, the Chamber is now being chaired by Debby Burton, a partner at Plante & Moran, and another exceptional leader who I can assure you has her heart and soul in this role. Debby served years ago on the Chamber board until such time her term expired, but because she has had a break in service, she was able to return and serve again. Wait! You mean I could come back and serve on the board again?
Tom Tanghe, City Manager