“You have to look back before you can look forward because you’ve got to see where you came from so you know how to get to where you’re going to go,” said Chamber Director Carol Emlich-Bates.
The theme for the banquet couldn’t be more fitting for Allen who sustained severe injuries in an automobile accident July 5, 2010 but has since recovered. Focusing on his future, Allen is back at work. Although, remembering the past, Carden recalled the accident as “horrific.”
“We came very close to losing Sgt. Allen,” he said. “Fortunately for us he is back at work serving his community. We are honored to have Sgt. Allen here with us.”
In keeping with the theme for the night Joe Hassell, Fire Inspector, presented Bates with the 2011 Firefighter of the Year Award which will be permanently displayed in NYC.
“For the theme focusing on our future by remembering our past we thought it would be fitting to award the 2011 firefighter of the year award to the 343 men and women of the NYC fire department that lost their lives on Sept. 11, 2011, this being the 10th anniversary of that,” Hassell said.
Per the business categories, the Rod Emlich Outstanding New Business Award went to Yoder Family Traditions Gift and Craft Shoppe, the George W. Carr Outstanding Established Business Award went to Carden’s Gift Cottage and the Dr. Edward Gantt Industry of the Year Award went to Fleetwood Metal.
In her chamber report, Bates said the chamber has had a good year, considering the economy. She said 28 new members have been added, bringing the total number of members to more than 400.
“Even in this economy our commercial and retail all seem to be holding their own,” Bates said. “We average one to two ribbon cuttings throughout the month which is phenomenal for the times that we’re in right now. Sylacauga is a great place to live and we’ve got a great future.”
Contact Lindsey Holland at firstname.lastname@example.org